Making a Character

So someone asked me to make a tutorial on how to make a character, not just drawing them but actually coming up with one.  Well, I’m not much of a writer and I’m sure there’s been plenty of better authors who’ve tackled this problem, but I’ll go about it as best I can.

There’s a few very important things to me that make a character seem more human so lemme just list ‘em out

1. Backstory

You don’t have to have like a whole chapter of a story devoted to the character’s history, but it’s important to map it out for your own reference.  Anything from how many siblings they had (and where they were in that number) to where they used to live to their parentage and schooling and friends can affect how that character will live and act.  A younger sibling is more likely to be loud and obnoxious because they had to fight for attention from older kids (or they may have been spoiled and are used to getting their way).  Certain places in the world have certain general demographics as far as religion and ideologies go.  If your character is not a religious person they probably wouldn’t live in the Bible belt - or, perhaps, they had religious parents.  How is their relationship to their parents?  Their siblings?  What were their friends like?  Did they have pets, and if so, what kind?  Did they spend their childhood indoors or outdoors?  Where were they born and did they move (and if so, at what age)?  These kinds of things will come in handy when trying to write for a character in the future.

2. Flaws

This is one a lot of writers struggle with because they don’t want to put their beloved character in a bad light, but a “perfect”, flawless character is boring and won’t cause any action in the story.  Your character can have personality flaws, maybe they’re really grumpy and antisocial or they hate energetic people, maybe they tend to be assertive and loud and push their opinions on others and not listen to what the other has to say.  Maybe they have physical flaws, like a disability.  Color blindness, a prosthetic limb, a lisp, a stutter, arthritis, analgesia, etc.  Maybe even a psychological disorder such as bi-polar, prosopagnosia, schizophrenia, multiple personality disorder, ADHD, autism or Asperger’s (HOWEVER if you are writing a character with one of these, please do extensive research into the disorder and how it affects human behavior and thinking, perhaps even talk to someone who has it, and treat it with respect!  Not all people with psychological disorders are crazy serial killers, and vice versa).  Maybe they are very untrustworthy because they love gossip and can’t keep a secret or they are easily influenced by other’s opinions and go along with whatever they hear.  Maybe they really suck at puzzles or they can’t dance at all.  Anything that can be used against them to create drama or conflict.

3. Figures of speech

This last one is kind of a weird one, but when a character has a certain way of speaking it makes them feel more real to me, and easier to distinguish in a crowd of other characters.  Some people use figures of speech all the time, some people don’t use contractions, some people have very elevated ways of speaking and some people speak with grammar you’d see on the comment section of YouTube (okay, maybe not that bad).  Some people use their hands a lot when they talk or have a certain word of phrase they use often (like “Holy crow!” in Stephen King novels or Goofy’s “Gawrsh!”).  Accents can especially help to differentiate.  If you have a character from the deep south, write their lines phonetically as they would say them.  If’n a character had themself a country accent, odds are anythin’ they said would be typed a li’l bit differnt from somethin’ a city folk’d say.  Now, if a character, hypothetically, was a very proper Englishman, the chances that they would speak the King’s English are much higher.  If someone vere French and ‘ad a French accent, zis is probably ‘ow zey vould talk. 

That’s about all I can think of at the moment,  Hope this helps! QwQ

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