1. BillyxRansom

    BillyxRansom Active Member

    Jun 3, 2008
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    Is this a good idea?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by BillyxRansom, Aug 14, 2011.

    For whatever reason I have a lot of trouble bringing in new characters after an initial, main character has been introduced.

    But now I've been tossing around the idea of unfolding my main character's actions from beginning to end, as if he's the only one there; then, later, I'll fill in the blanks with other characters as needed.

    So, basically, if you're familiar with the reference, I'll use the example of Garfield Without Garfield. What this is in reference to, is the concept somebody came up with, where they take an actual, random comic strip from the Garfield series of comics, and omit all of his appearances, thought bubbles and all. So John Arbuckle appears to be suffering from an existential (perhaps mental or identity) crisis of sorts.

    But I digress: "Garfield" will eventually make all his entrances, as needed. The characters will show up when it feels like someone needs to make an appearance, in the midst of the main character's dialogue, which, in its skeletal form, would appear as interior monologue.

    Does this sound like a good or interesting idea, or doable? I'm seriously having a lot of trouble bringing in a new character from the point where that new character would first show up, and I don't know why; I'm just trying to figure out how to resolve the issue. Even if I have to get unconventional.

    Thoughts? Thanks!
  2. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

    Mar 9, 2010
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    I say that anything that gets you writing is worth trying. In the long run, I think that it will probably end up being important to get more comfortable bringing in other characters, but this sounds like a perfectly good first step.

  3. Trilby

    Trilby Contributor Contributor

    Jun 21, 2010
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    NE England
    If it works for you - do it or at least try it.

    But it sounds complicated and laborious to me.
  4. spklvr

    spklvr Contributor Contributor

    Oct 29, 2010
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    Sarpsborg, Norway
    It does sound really complicated, but it will probably be an interesting challenge, even if you can't do it in the end.
  5. Mckk

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Dec 30, 2010
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    I'm not sure how that solves your problem. You do still need to introduce your characters - meaning your MC needs to meet them for the first time. If you have a setting where you can write your MC's actions, dialogue and reaction without the character being present (for the moment) - then that means you also have a setting for introducing your character.

    And what about dialogue? Your MC needs to talk to someone. And if you know his responses, that means you also know what your characters need to say to get your MC to respond that way. So why would you not write it?

    What I mean is, if you know how your MC will react to the characters, and what your MC will say in response to the character's dialogue - then you simply MUST know what those characters will do and say. So why wouldn't you just write it?

    I'd rather advice write the characters in as you have them, but simply skip the intro scene where the characters first appear. Miss out those scenes and keep writing. Then come back and patch it up with the intro scenes when you have more inspiration.

    You could also use your experience of how you met your various friends, teachers, random strangers on the road to inspire your story. All you need is one common thing between your MC and your character and BAM you have dialogue, and friendship, and therefore, an intro.
  6. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    May 19, 2007
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    Massachusetts, USA
    It's best to introduce characters individually, rather than all at once, so whatever means you use to spread the introductions out is good. Characters can even appera before they are properly introduced, particularly if you want to create an aura of mystery.
  7. DBock

    DBock New Member

    Aug 15, 2011
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    Give it a try. :) Just be careful that your characters don't end up becoming plot devices or an ends to a means.

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