Character development and creation can be the most difficult part to creative writing, and a lackluster or cliche character can be disastrous even to the most well thought out plots. This list will hopefully give a few ideas and tips on how to make your characters spectacular.
Before you can decide on what your character will look like or what they’ll be called, it’s important that you get an idea for who your character will be. It’s important that a character’s name and characteristics match the character; otherwise your character might seem comical. For example if your character is 6′7″ and muscular, is named Richard Braveheart, but is a coward, that character is going to seem comical. This may seem like common sense, but it’s important to think out all aspects of your character.
To begin framing out your character, I would suggest spending five or ten minutes writing down simple descriptive words about who you envision your character to be.
A bad example of this would be
tall, muscular, handsome, strong, black hair, happy, hero
While these words might eventually fit your character they are not strong descriptions of who your character truly is. These words also are very typical of a male hero, which may make your character a cookie cutter hero, and not very interesting or unique.
A good example of a list of descriptors could be
strong-willed, stubborn, playful sense of humor, immature at times, good-hearted, novice
This list is much better for beginning to frame out a character. It helps you get a good feel for the character’s personality, which will help you determine how the character will react in certain situations, along with helping to get a good sturdy platform to begin describing how your character will look.
Sometimes picking a character’s name is the most difficult part of the process. I will make a few suggestions that will hopefully make this a painfree process.
Once you have your list of descriptors try to think of people your character reminds you of. This won’t always be helpful, but sometimes you might find a bigger source of inspiration for your character.
If this fails to help, I would suggest trying a site like www.behindthename.com. You can simply use the site to search for name meanings and originations. This can be a great way to come up with a name to custom fit your character.
If both methods fail you, you shouldn’t feel pressured to pick a name right away. Try working a little with your character: drawing him/her, writing about him/her, or moving on to describe what she/he looks like. Don’t worry about it! The perfect name will come to you.
It’s really important to remember that in most applications your words are the only thing responsible for telling the audience what your character looks like. Looks can also affect how other’s view your character, so it’s important to describe your character carefully.
Things to remember
Once you’ve thought about everything else this part should be easy and fun as long as you remember to think about everything carefully!
I hope my tips will prove to be helpful.
Good luck and happy writings!