This Tuesday's writing topic is one that writers use techniques to make their characters believable. A good writer keeps themselves out of the story. I wonder if this is true, as I think of the great artists who did self portraits. In a way, we writers express ourselves in every fraction of our personalities and maybe use our alter egos to make our characters act out in a certain way.
Let’s start out with general characters. Major characters are complex. I start out with a character sketch and list their fundamentals. I have a mental picture of him/ her and know their height, bodily build, behaviors, traits, feelings and their beliefs and opinions. I also write out phrases they might say according to their personality.
Minor characters get a little bit, but if they are supportive to the major character I also have a sketch for them too. Of course if a character has magical abilities, I add that in the list.
For me I want the characters to act as though they were in a movie. They are constantly playing in my mind even when I am asleep. My goal is to make that crossover as a female writer to especially make the men characters realistic. Perhaps that is my alter ego coming out with the masculinity of my makeup.
If characters are cardboard cutouts, the reader can tell. What is your approach? Can you recall other literature that the characters seemed like cardboard cutouts? Perhaps a trashy romance novel but the plot was good.