Welcome to Gaia! ::

Alberic of Krufton's avatar

Invisible Exhibitionist

11,000 Points
  • Big Tipper 100
  • Nudist Colony 200
  • Brandisher 100
lacheyenne
what i love about my characters is that i give them opportunities to make good decisions- and they frequently make not-so-good ones. better than that: i know why they choose to do what they do (and they're not OOC mistakes made just to drive the story).

they also have the capacity to change over time, with story developments and as they understand more about why events have happened around them as they have. there is also room for growth when things happen to them that they can't control- things that aren't necessarily the consequences of their own actions solely inflicted upon them. neither is perfect, of course, and neither becomes perfect. (if nick dares to try, i will kill him off. i swear it.)

I actually was talking about this with my spouse a few days back, how good characters are supposed to act as humanly as a notion written on a page can be. We don't always make the "right" decisions or have socially/morally acceptable motivations, so why should something we want to make believe is a real person do otherwise?

I do love dynamic characters, especially as primary or secondary characters. The example I used my previous post describes that character somewhere mid/late adolescence; as a kid, he's different, and as an adult, he's changed again, due to circumstances and his own changing outlook. (I should know; he started as a secondary character, and now he's getting a prequel written because a simple backstory paragraph wasn't enough...)

Meanwhile I'm struggling trying to make the protagonist of the original project into something more protagonist-y. I think I have a good feel for his motivations, (less so for pre-story ones) but I don't want him to be as passive as I think he is now. Part of the story is about him saying "screw you guys, I do what I want" but I don't want to wait until the second book of a planned trilogy to make him interesting.
lacheyenne

what i love about my characters is that i give them opportunities to make good decisions- and they frequently make not-so-good ones. better than that: i know why they choose to do what they do (and they're not OOC mistakes made just to drive the story).

I think that's what makes a good many characters so fun. You get to see them learn and grow so they make better ideas ion the future, but they never lose their sense of fun.
lacheyenne's avatar

Dangerous Conversationalist

7,650 Points
  • Forum Sophomore 300
  • Treasure Hunter 100
  • Brandisher 100
Alberic of Krufton
I actually was talking about this with my spouse a few days back, how good characters are supposed to act as humanly as a notion written on a page can be. We don't always make the "right" decisions or have socially/morally acceptable motivations, so why should something we want to make believe is a real person do otherwise?

I do love dynamic characters, especially as primary or secondary characters. The example I used my previous post describes that character somewhere mid/late adolescence; as a kid, he's different, and as an adult, he's changed again, due to circumstances and his own changing outlook. (I should know; he started as a secondary character, and now he's getting a prequel written because a simple backstory paragraph wasn't enough...)

Meanwhile I'm struggling trying to make the protagonist of the original project into something more protagonist-y. I think I have a good feel for his motivations, (less so for pre-story ones) but I don't want him to be as passive as I think he is now. Part of the story is about him saying "screw you guys, I do what I want" but I don't want to wait until the second book of a planned trilogy to make him interesting.
you know, philosophically, i think that we can discuss both sides of the argument- whether or not it makes sense to write "realistic" characters. well-loved characters haven't always been so. beowulf? realistic, he was not. razz i'm also up to read the ulster cycle (from early medieval irish accounts) and... those protagonists aren't always realistic, either. and so on and so forth. ...i wonder if there's an application for such characters nowadays.

anywhoos. inasmuch as i know nothing about your story, it seems perhaps a waste to wait until book 2 to make a protagonist more interesting. xD maybe you can hint at the pending changes? are there specific events that catalyze the change? and what do you mean by "making your protagonist more protagonist-y"? by definition he is... but he isn't? his motives seem to be a big influence.

The Phoenix Rises Again
lacheyenne

what i love about my characters is that i give them opportunities to make good decisions- and they frequently make not-so-good ones. better than that: i know why they choose to do what they do (and they're not OOC mistakes made just to drive the story).

I think that's what makes a good many characters so fun. You get to see them learn and grow so they make better ideas ion the future, but they never lose their sense of fun.
biggrin yes! fun characters. i think that the audience can tell when an author isn't having fun with his/her characters (and i see that with ghost writing, too; some ghost writers understandably lack the same passion for writing characters that aren't their own).
Alberic of Krufton's avatar

Invisible Exhibitionist

11,000 Points
  • Big Tipper 100
  • Nudist Colony 200
  • Brandisher 100
lacheyenne
you know, philosophically, i think that we can discuss both sides of the argument- whether or not it makes sense to write "realistic" characters. well-loved characters haven't always been so. beowulf? realistic, he was not. razz i'm also up to read the ulster cycle (from early medieval irish accounts) and... those protagonists aren't always realistic, either. and so on and so forth. ...i wonder if there's an application for such characters nowadays.

anywhoos. inasmuch as i know nothing about your story, it seems perhaps a waste to wait until book 2 to make a protagonist more interesting. xD maybe you can hint at the pending changes? are there specific events that catalyze the change? and what do you mean by "making your protagonist more protagonist-y"? by definition he is... but he isn't? his motives seem to be a big influence.

Ah, yes, the old heroes. They were rarely supermen, for all their feats, though; there's usually some flaw that causes trouble for themselves. Odysseus liked to brag too much, and of course the whole Greek/Roman pantheon was one giant soap opera... Forget if Beowulf had any noticeable flaws, but he was generally considered to be a Pretty Cool Guy (since his boasting was Geat standard). They were still people, but really old literature was more about what they did than who they were as people. They talked about the Twelve Labors of Hercules, not his anger management issues except as to explain why he ended up mucking out stables.

I'm trying to make him more interesting---at least a more active character during the first book, if I can. xd The problem lies in that it's one of those kind of stories where a kid wakes up in a strange land and adventures happen, except more like The Wizard of Oz in that he wants to go home and not wander around in a foreign, hostile environment. Fortunately for him, he meets some friendly locals who help him along and keep him from dying from disease and arrows and stuff, but, as it is in my head and on my outlines now, he sort of goes along with things too much instead of making his own decisions. Once it turns out, whoops, he's not going home after all, he starts to realize he's been used as a pawn for various reasons and that his allies aren't really outstanding people, he starts to do his own thing. But that's after character growth; the challenge for me now is how to make him less passive.
Amy Storm's avatar

Magnetic Lunatic

Hrm, wouldn't it be concerning if you had one and only one strongest character? I'd think that would be jarring in any story.

I remember writing a draft of something once, and upon rereading it I decided all but one of the characters were whiny jerks. The one I liked, she was great. But the story wasn't.

I mean, I can tell some of the people in my stories are weaker than others, mostly second tier or lower Horizon characters. There's around a hundred characters in that, so of course that happened. It's also so heavily focused on the protagonist that he has four times the number of lines as the next most talkative character. But he's fine, the next ten are too, and then the background people are what they need to be.

ANF, everyone seems fairly equally developed, since there's no single protagonist and a grand total of twelve people. Their constant interactions do the trick, I guess. That said, you never get as deep into them as with Horizon's protagonist. Sort of a trade off I guess. I like both ways.
Uncanny Bus_'s avatar

Wheezing Dabbler

Ooh. One of my most recent, strongest characters was based heavily off a person I know whose personality is subtly toxic. The people who know the character's base have had really strong recoil reactions when the character first participates in a dialogue; people who've read the story but haven't met the inspiration have low to no negative or just slightly skeptical reactions. That was the biggest indicator that I'd captured the concept I was going for.

An older one I'd written into short stories on and off for a year. The entire time I'd had a gnawing lack of understanding for some facet of his personality- the character seemed to be lacking a grand chunk of its humanity and perception as I wrote it, but I couldn't figure out what was missing.There had also been little if any sexual tension introduced to the stories that involved that character. After about a year and at a completely random moment while I was with a friend of mine, I realized a character I'd assumed was heterosexual out of laziness was gay.

As soon as I figured that out, I could relax into the character's mindset. I'm not sure where it came from or why that was the pivotal information missing (I probably would have noticed earlier if I'd thought to explore their sexuality, but it never occurred to me in the context he was written for). I never did much with that character set, nor did he enter a relationship in the storyline, but it was such a relief to figure out the detail that had been haunting his lacking execution.
Vasaluv's avatar

Shameless Ladykiller

One of my characters that's always stuck with me as super strong is the villain in one of my works.

Her name is BelleAeta, and she's a gorgeous goddess with curling blonde hair and a fennec fox familiar of sorts. Her mother was the first goddess (Out of 4 deities) and produced two children. Her first was from being seduced by a human, though she never loved the man, and because pregnant with BelleAeta. She didn't feel a strong connection to her child, because of her lack of connection to the man, and quickly fell head over heels for another mortal man who gave her a second child, Kyrie, who she doted on like nothing else.
BelleAeta grows up a jealous and lonely woman, trying to kill her little brother and only succeeding in separating him from their holy land and giving him some mild amnesia. As he grows into a stronger person and tries to come back home, finding humans as his closest friends and companions, BelleAeta gets even more spiteful and decides to torture all of his friends in order to torture him so that he may one day feel the same pain that she feels on a daily basis.

Despite being so incredibly spiteful and vindictive, BelleAeta still has a following of mortals that she feels very connected to. Her high priest happens to be a very sweet young boy that's the King's little brother, and is always doting on her and causing a softer side of her to show. At one point, she decides that she loves the King, but his Queen has some issue with it, and BelleAeta ends up killing her and cooking her up to feed to the King, which doesn't exactly score her popularity points. However, her high priest is always there to calm her down with his wide-eyed adoration and understanding. To the point where they both claim to be engaged, despite him being only 13-14 and her being well into her hundreds (Though appearing in her younger twenties).
Her personality is very much so like the moon's (She's the goddess of the moon), being manipulative, beautiful, enchanting, and always reflecting the sun (Kyrie)'s light, which she finds repulsive.

However, as all antagonists have their fall, hers is caused by her selfish behavior. While treating her familiar like a pet as opposed to a second part of her soul, she sends him out to possibly sniff out Kyrie, who ends up fighting and killing him. As she is an immortal goddess, it's impossible for her to die, but losing a part of her soul causes her to go absolutely insane. In order to bring her to justice, her mother sentences her into becoming the Goddess of the Underworld, her spot as the Moon Goddess being bestowed unto her high priest.
In the end, she's left purely alone, except for her high priest, and it's just... really heartbreaking.

But her character is just... so strong, even in her spiteful weakness, and she'll always be my favourite character to have ever written. ;u; <3

...
//Endwalloftext.
I think that would have to be Hokuto for me.

He started off as a plot device for a now defunct RP, in the form of a refugee celestial being who needed sanctuary badly. But he became a mainstay, so did his brothers who were the antagonists. Eventually his story and character were fleshed out. Hokuto was the god of life, in that RP, who took a body of flesh in a wager against the god of death, his former love. He took a body of flesh and ascended to celestial status, not quite like his former rank, when he took on the title of high priest and leader of the army dedicated to Life, as in his god status. Funny I know. XD

He became a refugee at the start because his will to continue fighting for his bets were waning and he felt lost. His brothers, more like sworn brothers, had no idea of such bet and simply saw him as a deserter and wanted to bring him back by any means possible, even force. The other three brothers were also the leads of a respective army for the primal gods, in a way. C:

He found love in the story, a most ironic one, in the form of a dhampir slayer who saved him once during an incident. It is through their romance that the wager is won and his severed ties/bitter past with his former love, the god of death were resolved. So he got his happy ending.

Ironic since said love was a dhampir, a half vampire tying em with the god of death. In the RP's mythology, vampires were created from the sorrow and longing of the god of death for the return and love of the god of life, who had deserted him to prove him wrong/win the wager. Our gods were sexless and assumed sex based on their moods, since they were masses of energy that were strong and stuff. Since the god of life took a body of flesh, vampires hunted the living and longed for the life of others through the ages.

What I liked and loved about him was how he made wrong decisions from time to time. He made them in the heat of battle, with his relations with others and for his personal sake. He had moments of weakness and strength, that I found solid and believable. Unlike my other characters, he refused to give up and when he did, he would fight to find means to keep going, usually finding consolation in his family and friends. He was not perfect at all.

I think there may have been times he was screaming Gary Stu but somehow he liked to prove me wrong. :'D

Not to mention, he was an absolute joy to draw.

I always had fun drawing his clothes because his sect were know for flowing fabrics, subtle luxury and elegance. And the haaaaair... Harharhar.

I have been on/off trying to rewrite him in much simpler terms. The RP version was too complicated and now defunct. So I would like to rewrite him in my terms and on my own. I am no longer friends or in communication with that friend, I don't have the permission to play weigh her charas so yeeeah. Definitely.
I have 4 strongest characters. They have all went through trials all there lives, so it isn't just like "BAM! Your overpowered now biggrin !"

But seriously, the story I wrote is over a 15 year life span for these guys, starting from when they were about 6 or 7.

During the last Arc of my story, there opponet is the devil himself (Literally), so don't think I made them super strong just because:

Kite/Izual - Eventually gains the power of the very first Dragon, also known as the Dragon God.

Vincent - Gains the power of the Spirt of the Red Moon (Mother Nature)

Allen - Learns the 6 paths of Asura. Becomes a God

Dante - Takes the title of Death/Grim Reaper/What ever you want to call him.

All of them had their own reasons for wanting to become strong, but it all sums up to "because [they] were too weak to protect their loved ones" (I know it's cliche, but I still love that concept)

Kite's village, family, and friends were slaughtered; Vincent lost his dad and best friend; Allen's foster parents, and real parents were killed; and Dante was forced to shoot his own brother, the last member of his family.
I'm currently trying to revive an old story I've had in the back burner for a little over two years. She's a young woman who is simply apathetic and trying to make a living out of everything she can. She's very harsh, opinionated, quite poisonous, really, but a hero in her own way. She tries not to lean on anybody, yet won't hesitate to take advantage of those who aren't cautious. She's a modern day survivor, unemployed, trying to make do with what little she has.
Firlodge_3's avatar

Invisible Codger

How are we defining strongest character? Physically Strongest? Mentally Strongest (smartest), Emotionally Strongest (emotionally healthiest)? Strongest in terms of main character? Main Character? Strongest in terms of moving the plot along?
SantaniasGirl's avatar

5,850 Points
  • Forum Regular 100
  • Grunny Grabber 50
  • Risky Lifestyle 100
The strongest character I've created? Probably one of my wolf characters. She had an aqua pelt and deep yellow eyes. She wasn't physically strong, but more willfully and mentally (since I find these are pretty much equivalent to physical strength)
Orbiting Jupiter
I was going to ask a question about which scene would be more beneficial to the current chapter I'm working on but I answered my own question as I typed. Thank you writer's forum- you helped me without even trying! whee


On a completely different note I was wondering what the strongest character you've created is and why you think they are /good/ effective/ well developed characters?

I just thought I'd ask because sometimes people find that when this question is concerning a novel it's too intrusive. I was telling my roomate about my plot and he pulled a line from my 8th grade English teacher- "So what?" (in a non-insulting way of course- you've all heard this method used before right? Ask a writer so what and force them to fillgaps and what not.) So I decided to use it for characters instead.


What do you mean by "strongest"

Do you mean powerful? Physically strong? Or do you mean "what's your best developed character"?

Because many good stories have the most powerful (ie. strongest) character as the main villain.
I would have to say Vista. It is a clunky Android that has been made to sorta prolong the end of human life. Now Vista goes through many phases physically and changes everyone she meets mentally. The funny part and also the very sad part is that Vista prays to God before it intakes water or oil, and it prays a few other times. Vista is aware it is a machine and asks people to refrain from referring to it as she, because it can't have babies. It's my only character that I'm truly proud and I'm gonna give it it's own story.
It's important for a character to be relatable. Give them real flaws and worries and interests. Strong characters don't have to be extraordinary.

Quick Reply

Submit
Manage Your Items
Other Stuff
Get GCash
Offers
Get Items
More Items
Where Everyone Hangs Out
Other Community Areas
Virtual Spaces
Fun Stuff
Gaia's Games