May 10, 2011

Making Memorable Characters

Have you ever read a book, and fallen completely in love with a character? Have you ever known them so well that you felt like BFFs? What was it about them that made them so memorable? Here is a list of attributes that make your characters both believable and likeable.
1. Someone you can relate to. You understand this character, because you know their problems. You react the same way they react. In children's stories, the most popular characters (such as Olivia the pig) demonstrate traits that children themselves exhibit, namely mistaken beliefs, exaggerated emotions, pretending and small things that are important.
2. Someone you can sympathize with. Readers need to get inside the character's head. Inner dialogue really helps with this. You know their goals, fears, loves, strengths and weaknesses. By caring about the character, the reader is going to care about what happens to them.
3. Humor really helps. In children's books, we find it funny when a young character, such as Olivia, freaks out over trivial little things. Characters who are witty or who have funny character flaws, someone who makes us laugh out loud are those we want to read more about.
4.Experiences growth upon solving a major problem. If a character learns from his mistakes and grows from overcoming a problem, we are going to remember him/her.
5.Don't just write about your character; become your character. By understanding their background, you're going to know how they are going to react. If you know your characters, your readers are going to know them. Fall in love with your characters; if you're not in love with them, your readers will be able to tell. Take the time to get to know your characters.

1 comment:

  1. Kim,
    Thanks for sharing your new site. I love it. I had to read every post you have and looked for more. Keep up the good work. Eventually you will realize persistance pays off. All your tips are wonderful. Thanks again for sharing.