Character Creation

Whenever I write a story creating the characters is one of my favorite things to do.  The characters are a very important point to the story.  Characters bring either life or death into a story. Characters are what the reader wants to know about. Who is this person and how does he or she affect the story?

Each character goes on his or her journey. They’re either important to the story or have a minor role with little meaning. Some of the most important, classic characters from famous novels are not even the main character. Sidekick characters are very important.  One important step to creating characters is deciding if they’re going to be hero’s or villains. Many times I’ve written a story and am not sure if I made the right choice for their role. Some of my hero’s could make good villain’s and some of my villain’s would make good hero’s. Each character represents something, so it’s good to figure out what type of person and personality they may have or grow into.

Creating a character is kind like creating Frankenstein.  For a few days I’ll think about who this character is and what purpose they have for this story. You cannot have a robotic man in a story about the gold rush. Well you could, yet that would not make a whole lot of sense. Like with painting a picture sometimes you have to get messy before Mona Lisa appears.

Stories with relatable characters seem to be from my favorite stories.  I do not like fake characters like those who are meant to be super heroic or amazing. They only come off as fake and unappealing to me.  Why can’t the female protagonist not be a super bombshell? Why does the guy have to have amazing hair that blows perfectly in the breeze. Can’t we create characters that are amazing, yet show signs of weakness too?

From start to finish characters go on journey’s. The character figures out who they’re meant to be. In the Wizard of Oz Dorothy discovers herself. She began as a young farm girl who followed the command of her parents. She was just average and plain. When she enters the land of Oz she becomes this important figure who leads  to the rebellion and demise of the Wicked Witch. Dorothy goes from zero to hero.  Same can be said about Harry Potter. When the story begins he’s not very well liked and seems pretty hopeless. When the Hogwarts letters show up and he figures out that he’s actually a wizard who escape death his life began to have more of a meaning. That is character development.

In the story I’m writing the main character is kind of like Dorothy and Harry Potter. She’s pretty average. She’s not very popular nor really cares to be. Most of her time she spends alone reading fantasy books. Eventually she goes on a date with a boy she really likes. While on a date with him something tragic happens. She gets turned into a vampire. As a vampire her entire life changes. She becomes this hero in this new and exciting world. I’m not entirely sure how her life changes or how she becomes the hero, yet I’ll get to that point when my story is complete.

Deciding if a character should die or not is a difficult choice. We spend so much time crafting this person into who they become, killing them off just seems wrong.  They’re fictional people, yet we put them through so much pain.  It’s funny how so many times during the day I will quote a character as if he or she was real. On the other hand a character is created by a real person, so bites and pieces of their personality go into the character.

 Creating characters is a fun challenge. How do you normally create a character? Let me know in the comment section below.

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