Click for my theme details
Q is for “Quick”
Book: Write Away: Quick Guide to Character Flaws by Rose Fischer
My dice roll: 72 (ebook location out of 193)
Lesson: Character Flaws
Figure out what keeps getting a character into trouble. Use the answer to identify his or her main flaws.
Remember the Journey of the Hero from yesterday’s post? That’s where this book suggests looking for those big “trouble” scenes. I’m going to focus on Gwendolyn for today’s example.
What gets Gwendolyn into trouble most often in the story is that she doesn’t know what she is— but that’s not exactly a character flaw.
Fickle, selfish, and sheltered — Wend has all of those traits, though she doesn’t seem to be aware of it. If she weren’t fickle, her father might not have arranged her marriage for her. Tred suggests that Gwendolyn should put the needs of his children before her own. If she were less sheltered she might not get railroaded all the time, and she probably would have found a better way to travel to New York.
She tries hard to fit the mold of what her parents and religion tell her to be. But she ends up with a strange, secret life that disrupts her normal/ intended one.
Wend is afraid of change, but she is mesmerized by Xavier, who leads a life vastly different from her own.
All well-written fictional characters have flaws.
What’s your favorite that you’ve come across? Would the story have been the same if that character didn’t have that flaw?
#WriteTip from Editor Sam
You have to be careful with flaws. I once read a YA novel that was agonizing to finish because the protagonist’s “disregard for authority” made her entirely unlikeable. She was more like a caricature of a rebellious character by the end because she showed no self-awareness. I think even the worst flawed character can be saved in the esteem of the audience if they show that they know they have a problem. Which is not a “favorite” per say, but I do find it to be a solid cautionary tale.
Socialize online with J Lenni Dorner:
Featured Share of the Day: Blog Blitz focuses blogosphere energy for fun!