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I’m Obnoxious!

January 15, 2010

 Ah…. I love Finding Nemo.   Many thanks to Disney/Pixar for creating it.  And it leads nicely into my post for today – character flaws.  Ask Daphne had some interesting thoughts on perfect characters, namely, that it’s hard to like them.  Anell, a friend of mine, has named this writing style “first person perfect” hahaha.  None of us are perfect, so why would we relate to perfect characters?

In Catalyst, my WIP, character flaws were my favorite part to develop.  The thought that I went with was that people can cause all kinds of trouble without being evil.  They can be thoughtless, or neurotic, or selfish, or immature, or view the world in stereotypes.  Kate, my MC, is all of these, at times, and that’s where most of her trouble comes in.  For example, she’s got preconceived opinions about hippies and 4H’ers, as well as about society’s preoccupation with size – something she struggles against and falls into at the same time.  

But characters that are only weak, or only selfish, don’t have appeal for me.  It’s a balancing act.   Kate loves her family, her pet, and her friends.  She does random good deeds and bites back retorts in situations that would have me spewing them (I’m not perfect either, folks…).

Heros can still be good – but that Achilles heel is what makes them relatable.  Tell me about your characters, what’re they like?

– Holen

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2 comments

  1. Great post! I’m far from perfect, so why would I want to read about a perfect character that will only make me feel more inadequate?


  2. Ahh, I love flawed characters—think about how memorable they are, like Parker in Cracked Up to Be.

    In my current novel The Demon Guard, my MC’s has plenty of flaws–she’s untrusting, a tad bitter, and tends to plunge into things at the drop of a hat. I think her flaws make her believable, though.



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