5 Ways to Avoid Cliché Characters
One of the problems that writers sometimes have when they begin the writing career is developing characters that are real. Many writers tend to write cliché characters that are two-dimensional and do not make people want to read the story. So how do you avoid this problem? First let’s make a nice tasty treat with a waffle maker before we discuss good character writing. Here are some tips to help you avoid cliché characters.
Characters Talk like Real People
The first thing that you need to know is that characters do not talk like characters; characters talk like real people. Every writer has to learn this, and every writer has to listen to other people talking in order to learn how to write dialogue. If your characters do not sound like the people that you have observed in the grocery store, then you need to rewrite your dialogue.
Characters Have Flaws
You also need to understand the characters have flaws. Even the protagonist in your novel is going to have flaws. No one becomes a hero without overcoming their own personal demons. Understanding your character is supposed to represent a real person that has overcome their own personal issues to become this hero. It is perfectly okay for characters to have flaws, because it makes them seem like they are actual human beings and that makes people want to read about them even more.
Characters Make Impulsive Decisions
Something else that you need to understand is that sometimes your characters are going to make impulsive decisions. Sometimes, they’re going to make the wrong decision because that’s just how people work. You need to make sure that you are modeling them after real people, and not robots who weigh the consequences of every decision. Sometimes, characters are going to make impulsive decisions that make no sense whatsoever. As long as this moves the story along, this is not a problem. Of course, you do not want them decisions to go against the characters morals or already stated beliefs.
Another thing to keep in mind is that characters are going to get into their own personal biases because they have developed personalities. Every human being on earth has developed personalities, even if you are writing about children. That means that you need to allow for this developed personality in the decisions that you make. While not every character is going to follow their personality completely, you do need to make allowances for this development when you give characters free reign to run in your world.
Characters Experience Emotions
The next thing you need to understand is that if you’re going to write characters as if they are real people than they need to experience emotions. Real people experience emotions such as sadness, happiness, depression, jealousy, hate and everything else that you can imagine. People are complex and you should write about your characters as if they were experiencing the array of emotions that actual human beings experience if you want them to be three-dimensional and leap off the page.