Today I'm going to indulge my literary fancies. And pretend that I am some great writer dictating to my self, in a indulgent intellectual sort of way. I my mind I'm pedagogical, I sit in my high backed time worn leather chair, the kind that has eventually memorized my favourite way of reclining, and cub my chin whilst I think and twiddle my thumbs. Here I will attempt to set my erudite intellect in motion. Do be so good as to remember I said attempt.
Lately I've been thinking about characters.
Most of the time characters are so coped, yes a lot of things have been done, almost all plots have been done in some way or another. But how to keep the person that drives the story intriguing enough to peak the interest of the reader and keep them from first to last page without boring them. What makes a memorable story ? What will you remember after the last word is read.
Why the characters of course ! Don't tell me you haven't ever read a really wonderful tale that transported you to another time another world, that captivated your heart by some special character, one you cried with one you marvelled with. One you felt the crushing pain of emotions and the glory of victory. One you fought inner dragons with, one you watched fall in love, one you gave your heart to in order to understand that said character. yes I know a bit dramatic and a bit too epic for all stories.
but all stories do have some element of something that makes you fall in love with the story, and I will guarantee that even if the plot is something told a thousand times before, if you add a beautifully complex character, you've got something. If you think about it that's whats so special about the tales told from the dawn of time, from the dark ages with there myth and lore to the romantic Victorian era with there stories of mystery and intrigue. the ones that are remembered are the ones with a really relatable character, someone that you feel you could be best friends with.
But how to go about it.
When I write a character, I don't worry about the norm for such people.
I think, who would this person be if I met then on the street, would I like him/her ? would they annoy, fascinate, intrigue me ? Characters are people too, though merely in ones head. But imagine if that person were real. Imagine they had a life a family and all the wonderfully hard and lovely things about life followed them. I suppose I might say that when I write my characters, I try and think who I would want to be, if I were in the situation that face the said protagonist. I do this because I am excessively afraid of writing flat characters, who wants to read rubbish with no one to relate to ?
Evil in not born its made, and so when discovering the antagonist I try and think completely opposite of who I would be, completely the night to the day something so far from who I should like to be that it creates a good villain. In short I suppose I try and decide to write about who I would like to be, or who I would not like to be. And all the baggage that goes with that. The best characters are real, or seem to be.
As if they could take form and climb from the pages, and live in the visible world. They must
have heart, and all the deep emotions that the heart holds, even sometimes the two polars that some have. Then you find a plot, most of the time my characters come to me with there own idea of there lives, its just my job to write them down. Sure I can improvise when they become especially difficult and they do depending on the weather. There so temperamental. There lives seem to just play out, most of the time anyway. I'm a person that is obsessed with the psychological side of people, there whys, what drives them, there stories and how that effects them for good or bad. every one has there reasons, there insecurities there hurts all differentiating of course but there their just the same.
So I feel that if one is to write a really good character, and that's something that all good stories need, they must include this.
I do hope this wasn't too pedantic. And it did a end a bit abruptly, but what can I say. my scholarly mind ran away from me much too expeditious than I would have liked.