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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Relatable characters

It's easy to want to great a character that is perfect in every way and can do no wrong. Their life is perfect, they have the perfect friends and their hair always looks great. As much as we wish this was really possible, we must come to terms with that fact that it's not.

When reading a book, I always like to be able to put myself in the characters position and this is really hard if she/he has perfect teeth and a rocking bod. The sad truth is that I don't have perfect teeth and a rocking bod, but normal crooked teeth and a body that is anything bud rocking. So what do I do when I'm reading a book and I come across a character like this? Unless the book is so well written that I can look over it, which is usually isn't, then I hate the book.

The reader likes to be able to relate to the MC of a book, to be able to look at that character and see something of their self within that person. Weather it be hair that is constantly out of place or maybe they have a bad case of acne, you have to have a relatable character.

But it's not all about looks, it's about how the character acts and feels. What if you had a character that was always optimistic about everything and never had a doubt in their mind that something wasn't going to work out and this lasted all through the story? I know there may be some people out there that are like this, but they always have a moment of doubt and so should your character. Maybe they have doubts about a relationship working out. Or maybe they have fears that they are going to fail their big math test.

Or maybe it's the opposite. Having a character that never sees the light at the end of the tunnel is never fun and makes for a rather gloomy story. Brighten them up a bit and give them something to look forward to and be optimistic.

These are just examples, but something to keep in mind. When writing, look at real people and notice how they act or think or feel. Make your characters real and relatable, because who wants to read a story about someone that they can't compare themselves to? Certainly not me.