g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

Bored? Games!
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

Autism Spectrum Disorders
Mental Health
Blogs / Social Networking
Kidney Disease
Today in History

All times in EST

Clairvoyance: 08:00 PM

Full Schedule
g Fiction Writing Site

BellaOnline's Fiction Writing Editor


Unforgettable Characters

Guest Author - Natasha Deen

It’s been my experience that readers will forgive clunky writing or plots with holes, but they don’t forgive boring or flat characters. They will hang on for a bumpy ride, so long as the protagonist/antagonist driving the story makes it worthwhile.

As a writer, the question then becomes how do we write exciting, 3D characters? The list of factors to make up a juicy hero or heroine is vast—everything from education to socio-economic background—but for me, there are five big categories:

1. Driving Passion – in real life, we may never find our raison d’etre but for great characters, there’s always something they’re passionate about. In True Grime 2: Angel Maker, Aponi Runningbear’s driving passion is to fit in. She desperately wants to find her place in the world and this colors everything she does.

2. External Want – If the driving passion is an internal motivation, then the external want is just that: the tangible something our character needs. In Aponi’s case, she wants to become part of Grime because she feels that this will satisfy her need to fit in and fulfill her driving passion.

3. Emotional Motivation – There isn’t a character written who isn’t emotionally motivated. Just like in real life, most fictional pro/antagonists are motivated by fear or love, hate or strength. In TG2, I gave Aponi a double whammy: she loves her teammates and wants to be with them and she’s afraid that not making the cut will mean being alone forever. So, not only is she fueled by positive emotions, but negative ones, as well (much like real life, come to think of it.).

4. Fear – There’s the intangible fear (i.e. Aponi’s loneliness), but characters we love (or love to hate) are usually afraid of something external, too. The thief fears being caught, the cop fears not catching the criminal…Aponi’s terrified of a bully named Malcolm, and her saving grace is that she never has to face him again—well, that is, until he shows up at her new school.

5. Learning Curve – The characters that stick in our minds have to learn something, be it big or small, about what it means to be in their skin, to be part of their world, and be part of the society at large. For Aponi, it will be learning about redemption, forgiveness, and finding out that she’s much stronger than she believes.

There are other factors that make up great characters—how they react to stress, their family, their quirks—but at the end of the day, it’s the big thing: their heart, that makes us love or (love to) hate fictional characters.

There was only one thing Natasha wanted to be when she grew up: a superhero. Sadly, this goal was made moot when she realized that being a klutz was not, in fact, a super power, and her super-weakness for anything bright and shiny meant that a magpie with self-control could easily defeat her in a battle of wills. So, she turned to writing as a way to unleash her inner superhero. She doesn’t get to live on a secret space station orbiting the earth (and thank goodness because she gets motion sick on a merry-go-round), but she still get to wear leotards, a cape and say things like, “STAND ASIDE! THIS IS A JOB FOR WRITING-GIRL!” Visit her at www.natashadeen.com, and find her on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/natasha.deen.9), Goodreads (http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1314477.Natasha_Deen), and Twitter (https://twitter.com/natasha_deen)

If you would like to purchase a copy of True Grime 2: Angel Maker, I have provided an Amazon link below.

Add Unforgettable+Characters to Twitter Add Unforgettable+Characters to Facebook Add Unforgettable+Characters to MySpace Add Unforgettable+Characters to Del.icio.us Digg Unforgettable+Characters Add Unforgettable+Characters to Yahoo My Web Add Unforgettable+Characters to Google Bookmarks Add Unforgettable+Characters to Stumbleupon Add Unforgettable+Characters to Reddit

The Art of Teleportation
Coffee, Cigarettes, and Writer's Block
Related Articles
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map

For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Fiction Writing Newsletter

Past Issues

Printer Friendly
tell friend
Tell a Friend
Email Editor

Content copyright © 2015 by Natasha Deen. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Natasha Deen. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Val Kovalin for details.


g features
Write an Accurate Fiction Blurb

What is a Techno Thriller

Boy with Bubbles Writing Prompt

Archives | Site Map


Past Issues

Less than Monthly

BellaOnline on Facebook

| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2015 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.

BellaOnline Editor