Monday, September 13, 2010
I don't know about you, but when I read a book or write a story, by the end of that story, I want to feel emotionally exhausted. I want to feel like I just competed in the World's Most Exhausting Emotional Marathon, rotating through every emotion possible. While the cool storyline can pull you along that emotional rollercoaster, it's really the characters themselves that have to suck you in first.
Regardless of the genre, there has to be something about the main characters that makes us care about what happens to them. Otherwise, frankly, why turn the pages? Here are a few reasons to care that pop into my head:
1) Flaws. A main character has to have believable flaws. Perfection is boring and, seriously, so not realistic.
2) Problems. A main character has to be trying to overcome some type of inner and/or outer conflict that the reader has to care about.
3) Likeability. IMO, you don't always have to like the main character, but you at least have to care what happens to him.
4) Larger than life. There has to be something about the main character that makes him stand out against everyone else. Sometimes it can be subtle; other times, it's in your face.
Think about the last book that you read that you loved. What made you like (or dislike) the main characters? What about them kept you turning the pages?
Lisa. Please jump in and let's get this party started!