How to Write Interesting Characters?
How to Write Interesting Characters?
Pro Tip: Start with a logline
A character is the most essential component of a story. However, not many people are experts at writing an interesting character. Every writer wants to aim at writing screenplays that sell. For that a very important factor besides the plot are the characters. Believe it or not, Your characters need to be interesting to hook the viewer as well as the producers and directors so that they see the screenplay for its worth.
While screenplay synopsis and screenplay dialogue play an equally important part, characters will help you convey your message. A character will have both character and personality traits.
A personality trait is a quality or characteristic of an individual and it shows what that character thinks of themselves. For instance, characteristics like funny or bossy will be personality traits. On the other hand character traits will be an inherent value a character has, what they are and what they may not or cannot change. So before looking for screenplay consulting services and getting into screenwriting exercises, continue reading to see if your characters, specially the main characters possess these character traits.
Positive Character Traits:
A character trait can be more than an adjective. By them being positive or negative it does not mean that that they apply to the protagonist or the antagonist rather that they can apply to apply to the protagonist, antagonist and villain all combined. Positive or good character traits can drive the story in different directions for different types of characters.
For example, loyalty drives the protagonist very differently the way it will drive the villain. Nonetheless it is a strong character trait that motivates a character to spur in action. Besides that there are character traits like perseverance that shows the audience how this character is so determined to get what they want without bothering about the setbacks. It also happens to show that the character’s desire is so strong that they will get what they want. What goes along with perseverance and persistence is being fearless. Being determined for a cause requires to be fearless. When the stakes are high, your character needs to be strong and fearless.
There are also subtler character traits that give the character a personality. For instance, if a character has self-control then they will be shown restrained. Also, if they are calculating, they will be shown calm and restrained. On the other hand, if they are shown to be desperate and persuasive then they will have different personalities which can be less rational. However, all these a lot of potential for growth in a character and that gives writers the edge to evolve them over the timeline of the script.
Ambitiousness and vengefulness are two strong character traits that define how the protagonist or antagonist will have to be strong and an alpha character to get what they desire. With this character trait, there is an attached strong force that is helping the character look appealing to the audience. A desperate character trait can also look appealing if the character takes the right steps during the film and you will see the audience root for these characters throughout the duration of the film. They will support an ambitious protagonist but will also equally resent an ambitious villain. Nonetheless, they will be entertained either way because the character will be interesting. One lesser used character trait is that of spirituality. It might be used in religious films but also otherwise. Its purpose remains that if the character believes in a faith or religion then they will approach the issues or conflicts accordingly and their spirituality will shape their journey.
Negative Character Traits:
Again, here the negative character traits are the traits in a character that can apply to both the protagonist or antagonist. Hence using the word “ negative” is not to limit them to the villain but that to say that these are a little undesirable character
Traits, not obviously for the writer. Take for example, cruelty. Cruelty shown as a character trait in a villain is a progressive move to make your villain ruthless. On the other hand, it can also be shown how the protagonist is affected by someone else’s cruelty
Being unforgiving can work equally well and badly for both the protagonist and antagonist. If a character is unforgiving, the writer has many opportunities to delve on that character trait and extract important and interesting plot points from them being unforgiving. Similar to cruelty, comes greed. It will drive the character to do things and continue doing them. This can again be perceived as both bad and good but usually is used for the villain.
Contrasting to self-restraint there will be impatience. Again, a character trait usually found in antagonists and villains. Impatience would lead the character to make hasty decisions that does not benefit him, or the other characters involved. Being twisted or crazy also makes for a very effective character trait in engaging the audience. A certain section of viewers are drawn towards characters that tend to display traits that makes them unique from normal humans. For instance the Joker is a very popular twisted character and his character trait alone can generate more opportunities for the writer to instill and enhance in conflicts.
Characters need to have both the character and personality traits for them to appeal to the audience. Mostly, these character traits help writers delve deeper into the story and make their characters interesting. In a way, they make the writer’s work easy. If you have boring characters in your story, then you will have to try your best to make your plot intriguing. However, if your characters possess these traits, they will become instantly charming and the audience will cheer for them. Moreover, interesting character traits will help the writer move the story with more conflicts hence, making an enjoyable watch.