How do you develop a necessary character that doesn't want to develop?

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  1. ThompsonPen profile image72
    ThompsonPenposted 5 years ago

    How do you develop a necessary character that doesn't want to develop?

    What do you do when you have a character that is necessary, you're about to introduce them, you need them to make this one big thing happen....but you have absolutely no development of the character other than the gender and the profession? There is nothing about this character that is developing, no matter how hard I try. I keep thinking maybe I'll just go a different route, but I can't find another route at all that would far.

  2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
    Phyllis Doyleposted 5 years ago

    I would sit down with this character and have a heart to heart talk to find out where the blockage is. Sound funny or sarcastic? Not at all, and I do not intend to be funny or sarcastic about it. You have asked a very good question that is quite common with serious writers.

    I often will talk it out with a character, gently while encouraging him/her to come forward. I am not eccentric, I just find that when I start doing this I find something within myself that is causing the blockage.

    Just give it a try and see what happens. Good luck. smile

    1. ThompsonPen profile image72
      ThompsonPenposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      I love this suggestion, and I don't take it to sound funny or sarcastic at all. I did this with another character and I found out quite a bit about them. This one...shy comes to mind, but she can't be shy since her profession demands gumption of her

    2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
      Phyllis Doyleposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      I can sense that this character does have a lot of gumption and is very confident in her abilities - she is just a tad timid about talking about her achievements and success. Seems like you will help her to come out and be a notable character.

  3. dahoglund profile image79
    dahoglundposted 5 years ago

    One method would be to let another character talk about the new one, describe him or her, tell their feeling etc.

  4. Zelkiiro profile image94
    Zelkiiroposted 5 years ago

    Think of how you want the character to be at the end of the story, pick one or two of those aspects, and then devolve them.

    For example, Fate/Zero has to have Saber be a chivalrous knight who questions her own motivations as well as those around her by the end of the series, so what did the writers do? Have her start out completely confident in those things, and then have major events in the story destroy them both.

    You have to visualize the final form of your character, and then figure out what they were like before they got there.

    1. connorj profile image74
      connorjposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      An excellent  method indeed...

  5. M. T. Dremer profile image93
    M. T. Dremerposted 5 years ago

    There are two options that I think would help you. The first would be to give their important moment to a different character. Often times two weak characters will get meshed together into a single strong character in the interest of slimming the story. Just ask yourself if there is a similar character already in there somewhere, and can that character shoulder this new burden?

    However, you did imply that this character was too important to cut, so the other option would be to develop them outside of the story you are writing. In one of my hubs I included a character sheet that answers simple questions like age, parentage and basic story elements. I'll post the link below, but it's a good way to hammer out details that would otherwise be forgotten. And, you can take their back story to a new level by writing a short story, or even just a synopsis, of an important event in their lives, prior to the current story. By suddenly bringing this character to the forefront, you develop a whole new understanding for them. You might even like them so much that the back story becomes a main story. … Characters

  6. C.V.Rajan profile image61
    C.V.Rajanposted 5 years ago

    Stop writing. Don't fight it out.  Allow time for the character development to take place at the back of the mind. Let it be a few days, a few weeks. Doesn't matter. But, it will happen. Your mind needs rest and rejuvenation.

  7. alancaster149 profile image82
    alancaster149posted 5 years ago

    It would help to know the relationship - associative, physical, professional - this character has with your protagonist. Somebody with a personal interest in the outcome of his 'business', somebody with a grudge, or who stands to gain from your main character's failure to pursue her/his aim(s).
    What about a bystander who's drawn in as a witness and becomes involved somehow?
    Follow a few plots through, scenarios etc, look into newspaper reports of similar instances, watch a few crime films from countries other than the US (like that Swedish detective Wallander, the Belgian Maigret, or Inspector Lynsey in the UK), because otherwise it gets stale with the same 'formula'.
    There was a film some years ago about a Russian policeman in Moscow with a fresh plot. Play around with it.


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