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Questions tagged [character-development]

Anything pertaining to developing the details associated with characters in your writing.

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2
votes
3answers
93 views

Will an unrealistic character be out of place among other realistic ones?

Most of the characters in my story are well thought out and have realistic motivations and backstories, as I think most people agree that believable characters are important in writing (if you’re ...
4
votes
2answers
119 views

Character and world building in less than 2000 words

Is it possible to build a new character and/or world in a science fiction under a tight word limit? What aspects should be covered and what avoided? Also are there some similar previous examples to ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

How to identify a (personal) Canon Sue?

Sometimes (as an intelligent species, and therefore creative, speculative about reality and so on...) we want to experience some situations which aren't possible at all. Then as a writer you can ...
4
votes
2answers
112 views

Fiction copyright, mythologies and interpretations of ancient texts?

So, I understand that ancient mythologies and their characters such as Zeus etc are part of the public domain. However, what happens to individual interpretations of ancient texts? For example, a ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

A.I character that talks using pre-scripted messages. How do i make it seem more relatable?

I have some character stuff im trying to figure out for an AI antagonist. In a game development project that I am part of, there is an artificial intelligence that speaks to the player character ...
3
votes
4answers
366 views

How many character flaws can the main character overcome?

My main character is realistically flawed with a few good points. I'm very satisfied with where she is at. As I begin to connect the internal and external conflicts however, it seems that there is a ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

How to plausibly write a character with a hidden skill

TLDR How to keep a character's skillset hidden, when it will be key in the story later on? This must be done without magic and as subtly as humanly possible. I am working on a medieval fantasy story,...
-3
votes
1answer
87 views

How would mushroom call mycellium home? [closed]

I'm wondering for some time.. How would mushrooms fruiting body call it own mycelium? Imagine you're that fruiting body and after releasing your spores you are about to die.
1
vote
4answers
145 views

Double lies as sources of conflict in a single arc

My protagonist lives with a deep lie that causes internal conflict and pain throughout the story but it basically cannot fuel any struggle to the external plot. This subconsciously motivates the ...
3
votes
3answers
222 views

How do you make characters change believably?

Changing is an important aspect of every character and is what makes them believable. Yet, if you remember the ending of Game of Thrones, Don't get me wrong, as an outsider, I was laughing and ...
17
votes
8answers
3k views

Resolving moral conflict

Conflict is one of the most important things in driving a story. I’ve been working on my particular story for a while now, and I finally seem to have worked out a good plot, and by that, I mean the ...
17
votes
9answers
6k views

I feel like most of my characters are the same, what can I do?

If I think about the characters I came up with in my mind so far, I usually get a pretty big list: (Gyvaris (ENTJ), Martha (ENFJ), Adam (INTJ. It's hard to describe that you're constantly seeing ...
8
votes
2answers
537 views

Secondary characters in character-study fiction

How would a story flow if I made the secondary characters solely for the purpose of showing the reader how the main character has grown though the years? I'm thinking a 10 year span right now. They ...
25
votes
13answers
7k views

Can I conceal an antihero's insanity - and should I?

I have an idea for an anti-heroic sci-fi character whose character arc runs from spoilt rich girl, to a refugee in the rubble of human civilisation after an alien invasion, to crewmember and then ...
2
votes
0answers
67 views

Alternatives to develop relationships without dialogue [closed]

I have to come up with an idea (this is an assignment) for a story between 1 or 2 characters without dialogue and with a length of 90 seconds, so I know it's totally possible, however, when it comes ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Leaving wiggling room for your characters while avoiding contradictions

So, I finally began writing my sixtieth or so first draft. And I noticed a small thing: As sunset came the sky became a river of orange and gold. Maybe like a lava stream? Gyvaris might have been a ...
3
votes
2answers
85 views

What is another word for “character-building”? [closed]

I want to say that the author uses Character A's "character development" to explore Character B. In other words, the author builds on the personality of A to exemplify the nature of B. What is ...
2
votes
3answers
160 views

Doubt about the concept of “true (or complex) character”

Following the answer of @Cyn and my comment (on Doubt about a particular point of view on how to do character creation ): I would like to know more about how to "know" more about a true alived ...
5
votes
2answers
172 views

Doubt about a particular point of view on how to do character creation

Of course developing a character is quite an intimate process. But still, like a story, you can in fact have some tools that give you some sort of axiomatic path on "how-to". There is a TV writer ...
10
votes
7answers
645 views

Rapid change in character

A story I am currently working on contains a scene where a figure with a certain character quite unexpectedly has a change of heart, and I am having difficulty finding a way of smoothing the ...
9
votes
4answers
235 views

Is it alright to add scenes that don’t move the plot forwards much but develop relationships/character?

For example, let’s say the main plot is that the characters are on a quest to go find something. Can an author spend three scenes in a row detailing what happens on their journey there, even if the ...
1
vote
4answers
238 views

Introducing evil characters before the evil deeds take place

Is it possible to introduce evil characters (be identified as evil) before the action (the crimes committed by the characters) takes place?
1
vote
3answers
163 views

Anthropomorphic animals in romantic relationships with other species

Basically I’m wondering whether it’s totally weird or if people wouldn’t give much thought to it. I’ll use Zootopia as an example. If the main characters (a fox and a rabbit) were in a relationship, ...
4
votes
4answers
255 views

Lost my ‘magic’ concerning characters

I love creating characters, and for me it’s been the joy of writing for however long I’ve been doing it. I have maybe three or four unfinished projects which house characters whom I love, and they’re ...
13
votes
12answers
4k views

Compelling story with the world as a villain

My main character is up against the world, or, rather, the world and reality are up against her. A good story is in some ways defined by its villain. 1984 personifies its villain by adding a ...
7
votes
3answers
617 views

How to portray a character who has mood swings?

The protagonist of my trilogy-in-progress suffers from a serve case of Borderline Personality Disorder. Among his symptoms are continually splitting, unstable self-image, chronic feelings of emptiness,...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

What types of resources and primary sources are helpful for getting into historical character?

When you are developing characters for fiction, and particularly historical fiction, what kinds of resources do you find most helpful in establishing a distinctive voice? Two suggestions I've heard ...
1
vote
2answers
63 views

Where to find primary sources for getting into historical character? (voicing)

What sites, libraries, or other organizations have strong, easy-to-browse collections of letters, diaries, and other primary sources that are great for authors doing research for historical fiction ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I know when and if a character requires a backstory?

In my novel, at the point where the MC meets her would-be boyfriend, Rufus, I have added a small backstory about his job. Later on, the story is almost entirely focused on the MC and what happens to ...
4
votes
2answers
608 views

Is a fighting a fallen friend with the help of a redeemed villain story too much for one book

In a story I am about to write the best friend of the protagonist is a good, caring and benevolent person, lets call him John. The antagonist is not really a bad person but because of the ...
2
votes
4answers
246 views

Would this character be classified as an antivillain, antihero, or something else entirely?

From an analysis standpoint, I'm trying to determine what classification the antagonist and protagonist in my story would fall under in terms of the classic literary labels of "hero," "villain," "...
-2
votes
1answer
60 views

Coulrophobia: the fear of clowns [closed]

Can a child who has been sexually harassed by clowns be said to have 'coulrophobia: the fear of clowns' because of the fear and trauma she is undergoing? I mean to ask if the word 'coulrophobia' can ...
32
votes
12answers
6k views

How to write a sincerely religious protagonist without preaching or affirming or judging their worldview?

I am writing a book in which one of my main characters is a devout Catholic. His struggles with reconciling his religion and his experiences in life are crucial to his character and I'd like to ...
1
vote
1answer
79 views

Writing Longer Flashbacks

In my story my MC has suffered a severe injury and has no recollection of who he was before it occurred. He knows what happened and where he was when it occurred as he was told by the people who found ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Character Arcs - What if the character doesn't overcome the big lie, flaws or wounds?

I've been reading a lot of books about plot and character arcs. Most structures—and I believe this is generally good and true—require that the character come back from their journeys changed, usually ...
1
vote
0answers
42 views

What would be an interesting good deed for a character [closed]

In my fictional story, I want my MC to discover that her father did something nice in the past, that he took the blame for something he hadn't done just to help someone. Should be something that ...
-1
votes
6answers
308 views

How do I write a compelling villain-all-along twist?

I have in mind a character who is the protagonist's trusted ally throughout the story, but it is revealed at the end that he was the primary antagonist for most of it. This kind of thing has, of ...
6
votes
3answers
210 views

Balancing setting, theme, and character arcs: how to deal with a setting that carries emotional weight but is left behind?

When writing a story, how do you find a good balance between the significance of different elements, such as plot, themes, and bold settings and characters, and the character arcs? In my case I have ...
4
votes
3answers
156 views

From reactive to proactive; When should the protagonist change tack?

In my exploration of story structure, I have encountered some conflicting advice. In some instances, it has been suggested that the midpoint of a story represents the moment that the protagonist ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

Book on (character) voice

Any book recommendations that teach you how to make sure each character sounds different in dialogue and is recognizable even without dialogue tags? Any book tips to learn more about character ...
9
votes
9answers
1k views

Writing an ace/aro character?

In a fantasy series that I’ve been working on for some time now, there is a character that I’ve always kind of seen as not having sexual or romantic attraction. Originally, I did have a love interest ...
4
votes
5answers
227 views

What are the ramifications of a character sharing the same name as a famous and established character?

A character in my fantasy novel is called Beowulf. I named him such at a time I was unaware that this character existed in mythology, and was at least a little established. I didn't think much of it ...
4
votes
5answers
817 views

Should fiction mention song names and iPods?

In my novel, the protagonist is depressed. In the story which is in my mind... The autumn leaves were falling as I was sitting alone and Gary Jules' "Mad World" was ringing in my iPod. The ...
32
votes
10answers
8k views

How do I tell the reader that my character is autistic in Fantasy?

I am a woman with aspergers and writing an autistic character has always been close to my heart. Fiera Allas, a fantasy powerhouse with immense power and sword skills has always struck me as autistic (...
18
votes
6answers
5k views

Is it bad to describe a character long after their introduction?

I have a tendency to forget to describe character's appearance. But I always describe them, though often a little while after their introduction. So, how long after someone's introduction is "...
0
votes
1answer
55 views

How can I showcase the dynamic relationship between two personalities? [duplicate]

The protagonist, as a child, was born into an eldritch cult which worships the being known as shub-niggurath. His parents chose him to be an unwilling participant in a sacrificial ritual, using his ...
7
votes
5answers
3k views

How can I bring back a dead main character without cliches? [closed]

So I have a main character who will die at the end of the first book. In the next book he will be alive, but nobody knows it. Everyone thinks he is still dead. How can I do this without using ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

Should I explain the reasons for gaslighting?

I have an ambiguous script situation, 2 co-protagonists begin gaslighting the MC. They each have ulterior motives which they don't say. The reader is intended to infer the lies through contradictory ...
11
votes
5answers
266 views

Writing the dialogue of two travelers who dislike each other

I'm currently writing a journey-focused plot arc, and I'm struggling a bit with the character interactions. To give you some background, the protagonist is a lone wolf of sorts whose job is akin to a ...
53
votes
13answers
10k views

How do I write “Show, Don't Tell” as a person with Asperger Syndrome?

I have been told by my friends that my writing seems a bit blunt in the sense of I rarely practice "Show, Don't Tell" (SDT) in my stories. However, I personally find SDT hard because...I just don't ...