How to Develop a Character With a Strong Personality

I always envied anime because fans dress up as their favorite characters and meet up to talk about them. I always wanted a highly recognizable main character that people would fall in love with. So I did a study of my favorite characters. This is the presses I use to create characters that are extraordinary.

1 Start With An Emotion

Picking a main emotion for your character will not only help you get into their head but also write consistent dialogue and actions. I’d recommend picking a more complex emotion such as distraught, overwhelmed, self-loathing, or melancholy. This is a starting place for you to develop a complex character, just make sure there’s a change in overall emotion or tone by the end of the novel and poof, you have a dynamic character.

2 Turn It Into a Phrase

Once you can feel this emotion you want to portray can you find a piece of dialog that might convey how it feels. Not necessarily describing it, but that you would say when filled with it.
“I’m trying my best” is the phrase I selected for my easily frustrated and sad main character
Others ideas:
“Hell yeah!”
“Stop it.”
But you see how this can be understood in different ways depending on the emotion behind it. Some can be playful, some can start out as sweet and become sad, such as when a character who has died has his words restated later in the book.

2.5 Bonus Step: Turn It Into An Action

I can see the motion behind these words. “I’m trying my best” is yelled after turning dramatically back around, maybe through tears. “Hell yeah” is said with the character throwing his hand into the air as if to fist pump. But these are relatively lame examples as I don’t want to drone on for 500 words.

Getting this action down not only gets you in the mindset of describing emotion through action, which is very important for good writing, but it gets you seeing a situation, a plot perhaps, or possibly other characters that your MC would be interacting with.

3 Make This Movement/ Phrase Into A Turning Point

Whether this is the moment that forces your character into the point of no return, how they recover from the dark night of the soul, what happens at the plot twist or the climax or conclusion, having this central line appear at a time of tension can really lock a character into place. The line can be a great starting point for developing a plot or a scene.

I hope you found this helpful. If you came up with a phrase please let me know what it is in the comments below! Have a great day.

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