Developing a Believable Character
Developing your characters for your story or book means getting intimate with these personalities.
Your job as a writer is to give your multiple, complex characters a stage to portray themselves so that others can see who they are.
In order to develop believable characters, you need a road-map of traits that allows you to know more about them than you might even need in your book/story.
Below is a list of things you should consider to flesh out your characters.
- Name, Age, Sex, Race/Ethnicity
- Physical Attributes: Height, Complexion,
- General Appearance, Eyes, Nose, Ears, Hair…
- Residence – Location
- Temperament, Gestures, Mannerisms,
- Status: Single, Married, In a relationship
- Children or Not
- Pet Peeves
- Favourite things – Colour/s, Culinary preferences, drinks
- Training or Academic Background
- Any faults
Having these details at the back of your mind as you work helps you to understand and to build your characters to give your reader a visual understanding of the character, though your reader only needs to know the most important things such as:
The character’s appearance, speech, action, and thoughts – which would entail unexpressed hopes, fears, plans, etc that would allow the reader to see into their mind.
Let’s Build a Character
He looked at his full name ‘Andrew Jefferson Johnson Jr’ on the title-deed, he’s not fond of Jefferson but had not been in a place to choose differently as a child.
He’s a 32-year-old, newly divorced, fair-skinned, six-foot tall Canadian with gray eyes and a crew cut hairstyle that camouflaged the beginnings of a receding hairline.
As a successful physiotherapist, he keeps an excellent physical form despite his drinking indulgence and now that he’s single again, he could drink to his heart’s content without suffering his ex-wife’s irritating nags.
Their condo at Mississauga sold faster than he expected and he looks forward to moving into his newly purchased, posh and serviced bachelors’ pad in downtown Toronto.
The brief description above paints a picture of Andrew and throws some light on his background without getting too wordy.
I hope that you find this tip useful and you can check this link for more tips like this.
We would love to hear tips that you apply in your writing in the comments below and always remember to keep your writing as free of grammatical errors as possible with Grammarly.