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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Adding Character to your Characters

Photo by Karol Pomplin


First of all I'd like to apologize for not posting as much lately. Revisions have taken a big chunk of my time. Hope everyone had an awesome Thanksgiving! Been REALLY eager to post about writing—so here we go….

Shaping originality and charm into your characters can be a lot of work but it can also be a ton of fun. What makes your characters unique? Exciting? Appealing? Do they lack charisma? Beauty? Goals?

Maybe your characters end up becoming the opposite: Grumpy, unkempt, and hideous.

Think about the special people in your life or perhaps those who fill the entertainment business. In which ways have they succeeded or failed? What makes them who they are? What personality traits set them apart from everybody else?

Give your characters a unique habit. Maybe add a quirky word or two in their dialogue. Make them stand out. You should be able to read a passage of dialogue and know who is speaking without having to read any speaker tags.

Present them with more than one flaw/trait. This will give them some character and it will open the door to creating a three-dimensional personality.

Remember, let's stay away from clichés. If you heard it once before, then that's a cliché. Strain your brain and work your creativity. This is your chance to let your originality shine through. Yes, it takes some effort on your part, but in the end it will be well worth the labor.

And don’t forget to show don't tell. If he/she is the stubborn type. Don't say it— show it through his or her actions. Actions speak louder than words (excuse the cliché ☺).

Below are some awesome links that will help breathe some life into your characters.

Enjoy and happy writing!



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9 comments:

Sheri Fredricks said...

Well if your posting isn't information enough, the links will certainly help. Thank you!

Brenda said...

Great post!!! Thanks for this. How are the revisions coming?

Martha Ramirez said...

Welcome, Sheri! Brend,a revisions are going great! Thanks for asking.:)

Susanne Drazic said...

Interesting post. Thanks for sharing the links. Hope the revisions continue to go well.

worddreams said...

Hey, Martha. Thanks for linking to my descriptor list. When I'm stuck, it helps me to read this. You've given great suggestions on characterizing. The one about knowing who's speaking by the way they speak--I use that all the time. It really helps.

Great blog.

Martha Ramirez said...

Thank you, Susanne. Great to hear from you Worddreams. Thanks everyone for stopping by!

Nike Chillemi said...

Good article. I particularly liked thinking of the most interesting people we know.

Angela Ackerman said...

Thanks for this, Martha. :)

Angela @ the Bookshelf Muse

Martha Ramirez said...

Thank you Nike. Ur welcome, Angela. My pleasure:)