Questions tagged [characters]

Questions that involve people in a work of fiction, including character development, motivations, design, points of view, and representation.

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What are non-obvious ways to make the reader sympathize with the protagonist?

I was thinking of ways to make my audience like my characters. I always try to figure out my target audience and make the main hero as relatable as possible. Quite often do I embrace their integrity. ...
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What word could describe a person with integrity or the difference between a person with integrity and one without? [migrated]

I am trying to get the perfect word to separate those having integrity and those who lack it. I am trying to describe someone who accepts full ownership for their choices even the more regrettable ...
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3answers
133 views

How do you create lies that contains truth inside?

There is one thing I did not like to admit: I don't know how to lie. I could make up some random excuses but it wouldn't be convincing enough. And there is always a saying that I can't manage to get ...
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1answer
63 views

How do you realistically create a breakup/betrayal scene?

This happens in a war setting. I have a female protagonist who, in her childhood, met a prince who was banished and felt betrayed. Due to unforeseen circumstances, the female lead decided to help the ...
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How To Write a Heel Realization

Can someone teach me how to write both a heel realization and mental breakdown at the same time? I’m trying to write a highly emotional and heartbreaking scene where the central antagonist both ...
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1answer
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My story is a mythological fantasy set in England in the 1700's. I have two characters, and my main one, dies. I don't know how to continue writing it

As I mentioned in the title, my main character dies. I don't want to write it from my secondary character, because I feel as if that would feel weird for the readers, as they are used to my main ...
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2answers
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Halfway done with outline with no climax

I'm currently outlining a YA dystopian/science fiction novel, with two alternating POV's, but I realized I don't really have a solid climax--which I've always known as a turning point for the ...
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1answer
84 views

Killing off main characters in an ensemble cast

I'm trying to plan a very long-form meta-story with multiple shifts in tone and scope, the first part of which consists of a very small-scale character story with an ensemble cast of 4 main characters....
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4answers
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How should I go about writing a character that is a goth?

I have a character in my story who openly identifies as part of the goth subculture. I've taken pains to make sure they have a three-dimensional personality and aspects to their character beyond just ...
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2answers
77 views

How to integrate a unique world setting in the main story?

I'm writing my first novel which is set in an alternate universe, a place which is set on Earth but in a different ecosystem where story can get affected by nature and might take the reader to ...
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16answers
5k views

Is there any point where an overpowered main character could be an interesting one?

I just read a novel where the main character is overpowered: he has unbeatable superpowers, many girls that are interested in him, enemies that get scared just by facing him, etc. I find it annoying ...
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3answers
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Free Gallery of Human Faces [closed]

I am working on a comic book script right now. Nothing of my draft (except dialogues) will be read by readers; the only purpose of my draft is to narrate the story to my friend, the illustrator. ...
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4answers
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How to write dialogue with a large group of characters

My story has a cast of 59 characters, 25 of which are either protagonists or antagonists. Nine of these characters are very well-rounded and important, and most make an appearance at least once in ...
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6answers
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Does This Geopolitical Power Balance in my Setting Make it Look Like I am Promoting Colonialism?

Background The book series I'm working on can basically be summed up as a science-fantasy series that starts out leaning much more on the fantasy end of the spectrum but moves more and more towards ...
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3answers
105 views

How would a character with a certain personality react in a certain situation? [closed]

I'm at a point in my story where the main character(M17) was in a huge car crash. He'd been in an overturned vehicle for about 10 minutes and had sustained heavy damage. A few of his friends had come ...
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2answers
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How to convey a character's race/ethnicity clearly but appropriately?

When describing a character I usually provide some indication of their race/ethnicity since a lot of my work has multiracial characters and I tend to use elements of ethnicity in characterization. ...
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2answers
114 views

Is it okay to write short adjacent story of a second lead in the main story?

I am writing a story of a slice of life of a teenager girl who seeks her forgotten past and run away from her forced marriage to follow her dreams. I want to add another story of her cousin and her ...
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3answers
170 views

Can you write a story without a protagonist?

Is it possible for there to be a story of a villain on a rampage only told in his perspective and his victims? Near the beginning, he defeats the only characters brave enough to stand up against him. ...
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1answer
110 views

Is this character too cliche?

So I'm writing a story and my main antagonist is Death (At least from my MCs point of view). Is he as a antagonist too cliche? He owns a casino, his headquarters, and the setting is in 1700, London ...
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2answers
110 views

Novellas: How To Engage the Reader in a Character in Under 40,000 Words?

Perhaps one of the more difficult parts of writing is making the reader invested in the characters. It's really easy to make your character somebody boring and not interesting to follow in novels. ...
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141 views

How do I have my protagonist learn their lesson without pausing the plot?

I am writing a fantasy series where the protagonist's main flaw is that she feels she doesn't deserve happiness. In the mid point, the protagonist and the antagonist come face-to-face and the ...
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Is it possible to have a likable racist character? [duplicate]

My story is set in the modern world, and it's based on two POVs: a young teenage boy's POV and his great-grandmother's POV. His grandmother was born and raised in the 30s and therefore has different ...
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1answer
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Character's point of view when using empathic powers

I am writing my first novel in the third person semi-omniscient. I am aware that I ought to still structure passages from a primary character’s point of view, as in, if two or more characters are ...
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3answers
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How can I show that my character is not good with people?

My protagonist isn't very good with people. It's not because she is timid or an introvert but because she hasn't known anyone besides her grandmother and cousin for as long as she can remember. She ...
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10answers
5k views

How to make a story entertaining with an almost invincible character?

I'm writing this fantasy story with the MC slowly transforming into a non-human being. Which makes him invulnerable... Or at least quite resistant. The problem is that I'm still not fully sure which ...
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6answers
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How should my protagonist refer to my male character who is 18?

I am writing a part where the sixteen-year-old protagonist meets a male character who is eighteen-years-old. I am not sure how to refer to him - boy or man. The male character is legally an adult, he ...
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11answers
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How do you write about the human condition when you don't understand humanity?

I was talking with some writers, and they were mentioning how writing is fundamentally about "the human condition, our take on it, what we see in our world and experience. All stories, no matter ...
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1answer
152 views

Should character descriptions be written in past or present tense?

My novel is written in past tense and I'm wondering if the description of my characters should be written in present or in past too, especially if my characters are part of a series and will be ...
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5answers
184 views

Can one character be both an antagonist and a protagonist?

If the protagonist seeks to stop themselves and creates conflict for themselves are they a protagonist, an antagonist, or both?
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4answers
258 views

How can I make a character's dialouge sound smart?

I have an intelligent character. He's basically there just for comic relief, but also helps the MC. One of the special things about him is his dialogue. He speaks usually out of annoyance, like when ...
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2answers
172 views

What Is the Best Approach to Making A Main Character That is Not “Special” Without Making it Feel Like A Pity Party?

Just some background: I'm writing a story centered around a boy who is not special. As in, there is nothing too defining about him physically. The thing is, he isn't in a realistic setting. He is ...
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4answers
109 views

How do you write a character that falls into a character archetype without falling into cliches?

I have a character that falls into a particular character archetype. Specifically the genki girl. I remember seeing characters with that sort of personality in other works and wanted to try writing a ...
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7answers
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Are wants/needs and goals/desires the same thing? Which of these is the motivation?

I've seen many people say I should know what my character's goals and desires are. But I've also seen people say I should know what their needs and wants are. I looked at the definitions, and they are ...
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9answers
10k views

Is it offensive to kill my gay character at the end of my book?

In my novel, while the main characters are building the plot and driving it forward, there is a subplot with a gay couple. One of the gay partners is best friends with the female protagonist. At the ...
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2answers
48 views

Does descriptive language in written fiction work as well as physical characterization in visual media?

Character design in visually oriented works (comic books, film, television) is often a useful shorthand for making characters stand out and be memorable in terms of their appearance. For example, ...
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Can I have one Aristotelian comedy and another Aristotelian tragedy unfolding simultaneously in one book?

In my novel, I have two main protagonists, a father and son, who each have related but separate arcs developing in tandem. Each learns from the other over the course of their stories, culminating in ...
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1answer
51 views

How to make a romantic subplot without dragging it out?

So, I have my MC and her love interest. One is a prince who is a fugitive of his kingdom, the other a street urchin who has a scarred past. Despite this, the MC falls in love with the love interest ...
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6answers
239 views

How do I make a timid, introverted protagonist sympathetic and likable?

People like proactivity and boldness. Indeed, this has been suggested to be why readers are often drawn to charismatic villains over heros, people are more drawn to the proactive, goal-oriented ...
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5answers
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How do I make a headstrong female character likable and not annoying?

I have a story where one of my lead characters is a headstrong young woman. In terms of personality she is hyperactive, energetic, and charismatic, but at the same time these traits make her arrogant, ...
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5answers
150 views

How to avoid having too many side characters in school-based story?

Follows up this my question (How to choose ideal number of main characters?) I want to write a book / series about 4 friends from school. A little inspiration comes from The Middle series. But I do ...
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2answers
68 views

Can I use the name of a character if they have totally different traits? [duplicate]

I'm writing a 7 book series and I wanted to use the name Roth in my series. However, I've seen this name used before in The Dark Elements series by Jennifer Armentrout. If my Roth is a totally ...
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2answers
111 views

How do I show a character is involved in Internet subculture without making them seem dated?

I have a character who one of their primary character quirks is supposed to be that they are very involved in Internet subculture. They're a programmer who spends a lot of their spare time on certain ...
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2answers
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Starting character alive or dead?

I've been struggling with this one for a long time and it's really kept me from moving forward. My main character starts off as a queen consort, and the death of her husband and her stepson (co-kings) ...
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8answers
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How do I handle an unequal romantic pairing in a world with superpowers?

I am writing a story that revolves around a number of characters that have superhuman abilities living amongst normal people, akin to they myriad superhero comics or many urban fantasies out there (e....
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1answer
47 views

Is this sort of POV switch not recommended? [duplicate]

In an story I mentioned previously in past questions (Don't worry, nothing important that won't be explained here), I was going to have the protagonist go through a hero-to-villain arc and the ...
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2answers
98 views

Is this sort of character arc too confusing?

In my story, I wanted to play with the idea of the protagonist taking a hero-to-villain arc, and the antagonist taking a villain-to-hero arc, with the POV's switching to make the previous antagonist ...
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4answers
134 views

How To Write A Prejudiced Likable Character

I want to keep this brief, but the protagonist in my story is a prejudiced adolescent. Her views are outdated, but the whole point of the story was to have her improve. I know flawed characters are ...
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3answers
61 views

Tips on adding plot misdirection

I am a young author writing a fantasy series. My story is unpredictable, but there is absolutely no plot misdirection whatsoever. I have tried writing plot misdirections in my story a few times, but I ...

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