How to Develop Better Characters for Our Stories

One crucial element in writing a book is the development of characters for the story. Character development is important and necessary in any piece of writing to help draw in the reader’s attention.  Unless your story is about an object, the characters is usually the main focus and they are what the book is written about.  First think about what type of story that you are writing.  Then try to develop your story’s setting.  Time, place, and location will help determine what your characters will be like.  If they are from Antartica, they will probably not be tanned and wear shorts.  The same goes for a character that is from the Old World.  They will not have sophicicated speech and proper attire.  You see my point.  Think about one of your closest friends or a family member.  If you had to describe what they were like on paper, what descriptions would you give them.  Try to make your characters seem real, like they were your best friend.

Here are just a few things to consider when writing your characters descriptions.

1. Decide about their outward appearance, dress, physical features.

2. Look at their speech.  Do they have an accent?

3. Where are they from?  Past, present, future, what country, island, world?

4. How old are they?

5. Do they work? Where?

6. What do they do in their spare time?

7. Have they experience trauma in their lifetime?  How did they cope with it?

8. What is their family like? Do they get along with them?

9. What motivated them?

10. What is their weakness? Are they sickly, have allergies, blind, etc…

11. What is their attitude? How do they treat others they come into contact with?

12. Are they angry, happy, sad, deranged, prideful, fearful?

13. What are their likes and dislikes?

14. What are their beliefs? Are they spiritual?

When writing your story, don’t answer everything about your characters in the same paragraph.  Give your reader’s time to digest a little before telling them more.  Explain your characters instead of being straight forward by telling them, “She was mad at her mother”.  Instead you could say, Kara covered her ears when her mother tried to talk to her.  She would pull away anytime her mother tried to give her a hug.

Other related links:

http://ezinearticles.com/?Writing-Character-Profiles—Creating-Characters-That-Grab-Your-Attention!&id=3036365

http://fullcircle.comicgenesis.com/characterdevelopment.htm#pov

http://writingcenter.tamu.edu/2008/types-communication/creative-writing-2/character-development-creative-writing/

http://ezinearticles.com/?Character-Development&id=510807

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