‘Ey … so y’know how you have definite plans for writing a post and then you sit down and just think “No.” like “This post has no interest to me/it’s way too late in the day for me to get this together and I don’t currently have time to do this.”
Yeah … *coughs* Anyway.
I’ve actually been writing a bit (yay … NYR #1! And … kinda other ones? #6 … eh …) and … thinking, (I know, dangerous. 😉 ) and also reading. And I’ve kind of come to realize something about people in general, but more specifically characters. They … all have … to put it simply, emotions.
Okay yeah, of course they do, Sarah. How is this new and different?
Okay so it’s not exactly that they have emotions it’s just that … everything we do has a reason, right? We experience something and our brain processes it and then, based on logic and emotions (and logical emotions and emotional logic and … hang on …) we do something which causes other people to do stuff and that’s just how people kind of work.
Right … that’s semi-deep. 😛
So the thing is, as people, we kind of do all this without realizing it. But as writers, we need to realize this so we can do the same for our characters.
Characters … the best characters … are people. I feel like some of the best stories are created around people. You can have the best, most fantastic exciting plot and a fantastic world but if you stick a useless cardboard unrealistic character in there it’s … not going to be exciting.
I kind of feel like … I personally at least, want to read a story and relate to the characters. I want to feel something. I want to understand what crazy things the characters are dealing with, and … empathize with them. I might not approve of what they do but I want to understand why they do it.
See characters … are like people. Characters are people. They do what they believe is best. They experience doubts and pain and hopes and dreams and emotions. And they have to deal with emotions just like normal people. Characters aren’t just … straightforward. It’s not just, do this and journey and adventure and voila. I mean … some people ignore emotions and just trudge on pushing all doubts away but then that’s also like … a specific character trait, you know? Then they themselves is pushing the emotions away which is like … almost an emotion in itself and also makes them even more of a character.
A character is not just … a blank slate, a robot, to be controlled. A person doesn’t just do stuff. They feel stuff. Which makes them do things.
No one really wants to read about a cardboard character who doesn’t actually do anything and skates through life without pain or emotions. In every good story there is a conflict. And even if the conflict is external (say … a dragon … an evil villain … a giant storm … all that jazz) if your characters are people there will probably still be some internal conflict. Emotions are just as powerful as dragons (even if dragons are awesomer 😉 )
I feel like we want to relate to people and understand their struggles. And the more we know, the more we get attached and the more we get attached the more we want to relate and know.
I feel like … it’s just important to realize our characters are people. And people or … most people I think … are constantly fighting ourselves even if we don’t realize it. We experience so much. And our characters should reflect that. This doesn’t mean that we’re going to go write down “Jane felt a pang of sadness and started crying uncontrollably.” (Even though there’s nothing particularly wrong with that … I mean … it’s a bit of telling instead of showing but … idk …) because … maybe Jane hates how weak she feels when she’s sad. So maybe Jane reacts in a different way when she feels sadness. Jane might shut out everyone, or push herself into work, or react in anger (maybe anger at herself for feeling sadness in the first place) and break stuff when she feels sad. Who even knows? People are so incredibly that it could be any one of these.
So … yeah. Sorry about rambling on and just kind of … y’know not … making 100% sense (cents … *laughs evilly* I make no cents as I type these words … *coughs*) My thoughts tend to go all over the place and unfortunately this reflects that. 😛
But yep. Characters …
So … hopefully that made at least some amount of sense and was actually interesting/useful to you. 🙂
Until later then, m’dears, I hope you have a fantastic day. Stay awesome.