It’s YOUR Monster

Have you ever anticipated eating something visually appealing, but upon the first taste it had no flavor?
Tasteless or over-seasoned characters can kill a book. A well-seasoned character must flow with realism, grow into a likable or loathsome individual, and have a basis for their actions. Personally, I like to build an attachment to them, root for their successes, or be grief-stricken by their losses.
When I first envision a story, I create the main struggle, then build the characters around it; however, I tend to produce more along the way.


Writing characters:


Establish what they look like:

     — Try to visualize what your character looks like. It’s not necessary to incorporate that in the first few pages, but it can be a slow introduction. The importance is to grasp a mental image of your character(s).


 Add characteristics you are familiar with:

     — Each character you create is a piece of your personality.
     — Graft to principles you admire about them.
     — Highlight the not-so-likable qualities.


Add traits which aren’t normal for you:

     — Maybe a profession or hobby (you may have to research)? What sets this character apart from you?
     — Add imperfect characteristics: flaws, disfunction, or some other trait that will make them more realistic.


Lastly, as weird as it sounds, become the character:

     — When you are writing, you must step inside their head, see behind their eyes, and create scenes from their perspective.
     — Every character feels emotions. Some characters may suppress feelings that others cannot see; however, their emotion is always visible to the author/reader.


In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, you cannot help but to feel sorry for the abhorrent monster—an intelligent, articulate beast.
“You must create a female for me, with whom I can live in the interchange of those sympathies necessary for my being. This you alone can do; and I demand it of you as a right which you must not refuse to concede.”
Just from that example, you feel the creature’s pain and loneliness. It is a sad tale, but Mary Shelley poured enough seasoning into each personality, leaving the reader is conflicted.


So, with that said, it’s YOUR monster. Get out there and create it!
Take care, my friends 🙂

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