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How do you come up with your characters? Name? Descriptions? Identities?
What I do is look around at people.. and I name them.. and I give them a pretend background and use that in my flash fictions.. the best characters come from real people I think...
Depending on the story, I usually draw off of personal experience, maybe base a character off of someone you've known in your life. As far as names, I usually go with whatever pops into my head, unless it is a story that is historic or based in a foreign land, you'll want to do some research as to what the names are in that country or time period. i.e. if you're writing a story about celtic ireland, look up "celtic irish names" in google and see what you can find.
I look at my bookshelf and pick a name from one of the authors. Sometimes it spawns something else, sometimes Michael Grant will just become Michael Summers. When I think of other things like what they look like, how they'll act, I'll take characteristics from people I know. I'll take one friend's loud mouth and another friend's inquisitive nature and throw them together, see if they work and if they do, slap it on the paper and call it done.
My characters are almost always changing, so at the end I always make sure to go through whatever I've written and make sure who they are at the end is conducive to who they are at the beginning. I tweak their personalities to fit situations, sometimes the other way around. It's about coming up with your own formula and if it comes out how you want it to, great; if it doesn't, change one or two things and see if you like them more now.
I have the hardest times with names. I think, I over think it. I don't want something common, yet nothing to difficult.. I base a lot of my people from personal experience. Good question!
This all depends on the type of writer you are and how you draw on experiences and people from your life and project that through your writing. With a book I'm working on right now, it involves a very large concept with realism yet some fantasy aspects to it. All the characters in it I have made just by looking up different names (I tried to use names that were not common) and trying to match them with suitable last names that I created. I included one historical character because in the fictional scene it involved a senate hearing and I wanted to make it accurate since the scene takes place in 2010 - in my story.
Another great way to create characters is to think of people that you've met before, especially the ones that stick out. No matter how strange they are or if you only met them for ten minutes - you remembered them, so it must mean something. If you like the thought of that person - elaborate on it. Think about that person in utmost detail - the way they carry themselves, the draw or accent their voice may have held, the things they did for a living, etc. Expand your mind to everything in the world and the possibilities are endless. Try to have fun with it, think of all the different kooky and scintillating personalities you could create just with your mind!
Oh that is such an easy question. What are your favorite types of people? What personalities are you attracted to? When you day dream, what character is it? Mine is the occasional loner with a special ability, they can be highly intelligent, observant, etc. Then think for a moment, where will the story take place? In this era, a different time, or even in a different world? For example, I adore fantasy mixed with historic.
The most difficult part of every character is coming up with a name. Do you want an interesting name? Research a part of their character in a different language that sounds pretty and is easy to read. Or go through the names of the stars. They have proven to be interesting many times. To some names are simple, who do they remind you of in your life?
Imagination and memories. Whatever comes to mind really.
This is an interesting question. For novels I have thought of the situation the main character is in first, and then the character evolves. Other characters sometimes appear that I had no plans for but I do then spend a while working out their personalities, what they would look like etc.
I like the behaviour of characters to be believable for their situation so I do a fair bit of research. If need be I speak to people who would know more about the behaviour of a particular character. For instance in my first novel there is a heavily drinking mother and small child, so I spoke to counsellors who could tell me how the effects of this is likely to affect the child’s personality.
It’s also very useful to talk to the opposite sex to see if you are representing them accurately as there does seem to be some variations in how men and women look at life! :-)
I use the note feature of my cell phone to document interesting names, places, and characteristics of people whether they are my friends or random strangers. This way I can keep them all in one place until I need them in my writing.
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