Developing The Hero’s Character In Your Story
March 10, 2010
Building characters is an integral part of any novel. They are the main ingredients that make up the key elements of the story.
The character can be of any gender and age but its placement, timeliness in the plot can make the story dramatic, energetic or just a drag. Often novels hit the bestsellers list because a certain character’s trait touched their hearts. Stories always don’t have to be non-fiction to drive home a message or create empathy among the readers.
Fiction stories too can create the same impact and at times a better impression if the hero of the story has total command over the other secondary characters. He should be able to control the readers mind and their reading speed.
We can take examples from various writers who have successfully created genre heroes that have become eternal classics. My all time favorite characters or heroes are Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Perry Mason by Erle Stanley Gardener, Hercule Poirot by Dame Agatha Christe and Alex Delaware by Jonathan Kellerman.
So what makes the character of the hero so special that it takes the reader’s consciousness to the next level? Developing the hero’s character depends on a number of factors.
1) The theme of the novel.
2) The purpose of the hero in the story. What is the hero supposed to do? Save the love of his life or destroy a virus?
3) Are there any shades within the hero’s character? Is he always a good Samaritan or just pretending to be one? The hero could turn into a villain too.
4) The reason behind the hero’s actions.
5) What is the hero’s personal gain from his actions?
6) Will he achieve it in one shot? What are the obstacles standing in his path?
7) Will there be a happy ending or will he face a heroic death?
These are some of the basic questions that a writer should think of before thinking about what attributes the hero’s personality should possess.
A good way to build a hero’s personality in the story is to watch the most loved television actors. I am fascinated by the character played by David Caruso in CSI Miami that airs on CBS in US and AXN in India. The character of Horatio Caine has a cult following. His unique expressions, style of talking, the flick of his sunglass, his walking in and out of the frame is simply amazing.
The following video gives a better idea of what I am talking about.
The uniqueness that is needed to be created to build a hero’s personality is a tremendous job. If more attention is paid into building this character then even a simple everyday plot can be spiced up by giving it its own subtle touch.
Building a hero for your story is no cakewalk. You need to develop a mental picture of him or her and refine their movements, accents, features and adorn them with a solid background that influences their very being. The hero’s character can be larger than life as in the case of Horatio Caine yet it is easily identifiable and adored by people of all ages across continents.
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