How can I make a situation where someone close to a character is killed emotional? I've tried many times, and each time it seems to me like the reaction of my main character isn't like what a real person's would be. How can I improve this?

  • we need some details about what you wanted vs what you achieved.
    – wetcircuit
    Jan 26, 2023 at 17:06
  • The character was killed to make another character give someone information. I made my character try to hold back tears so as not to appear weak to the person who killed their friend, but I don't know how someone would normally react to that situation. For example, would they be able to contain their tears? I know it would depend on the person, but my character is not particularly emotional, nor cold.
    – Selina
    Jan 26, 2023 at 17:15
  • Sorry, maybe I wasn't clear. We can't tell you what to write, that's off topic here. I will say this situation is a trope, and sounds very UNrealistic –– you can kill someone's friend only once, then what...? As opposed to keeping the friend alive and continuing to inflict pain and suffering.... If you were the villain, which tactic would you chose as 'leverage' to get someone to talk?
    – wetcircuit
    Jan 26, 2023 at 19:20
  • I guess I didn't explain enough. There was a group of people being used as incentive, and she was only the first of them. my main character lied, and the friend was killed because of the lie. But yeah, if it was just the friend, my situation would make no sense :)
    – Selina
    Jan 27, 2023 at 13:56

1 Answer 1


So, if it depends on how good of a friend this character was. If they were like “besties” or something like that, then depending on the character’s personality, they would most likely cry. But if the protagonist is trying to ‘look strong’ then the best thing to do would be to just add more and more emotional baggage in the protagonist’s point of view. Like outside of their adventure the protagonist is in his/hers/their room and then that’s when they start to have flashbacks and cry over the memory of their lost friend. Other than that, it would be best to make the main character gloomy over the topic of their friend’s death. So then, the reader knows that they really cared for their friend. Even if it was a bad friend, you could have some flashbacks or arguments, or something like you didn’t really want them to pass.

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