A-Z Challenge: C is for Characters

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Cowboys on Horses, Remington, Frederic, 1861-1909.

Cowboys on Horses, Remington, Frederic, 1861-1909.

  "Great characters are more likely to be main characters"   C is for Characters.  It seems as writers we are always attempting to generate new, exciting, and informative material for articles, stories and yes, even for  novels like The Fires of Waterland. I feel obligated to  mention that, because the story line in FOW is built upon characters and the specific characteristics of characters. Why is 'Fletcher Carnival Williams' named as he is?  You'll find out. He's a character. Character-building can be a challenge.  If we're lucky, it comes naturally;  if not, it can be a struggle to create characters that speak to the reader. Individuals, to be memorable characters, must surreptitiously  or otherwise work their way into the mind of the reader-and stay there. That tall girl with an eye-patch  will remain in the mind; her bland band of generic wall-flower friends gossiping at the doorway will not. Content depends upon characters; clarity and a good story line  demand the establishment of characters offering a  brand to be remembered. Well-created characters offer something distinguishable from others. Their individual characteristics may be  quirky, or they may practice an unusual habit. They may have a contrary appearance, sport something  weird, even perhaps in-your-face and  rare,  and unique. They are different, unlike their associates, identifiable --but above all, they must be memorable. Why is that necessary?  To cut to the chase, you want to make all  content  exciting and memorable. To wit,  John Smith and  Bill Brown as a pair of dusty horseback riding fools out west  would hardly be memorable characters in a posse of thirty men, but Thistlefoot John Smith and  Bill 'Rosie-nose' Brown would likely occupy the mind of the reader far beyond their initial introduction. Great characters are more likely to be main characters, lead the posse, capture the bandits and save fair maidens in runaway wagons. "Let's try and catch up to Thistlefoot and Rosie-nose,  boys!"   That's why C is for Characters.    Is that Incoming I hear?FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

About Raymond Alexander Kukkee

A published author and freelance writing professional, Raymond lives and writes in Northwestern Ontario.
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8 Responses to A-Z Challenge: C is for Characters

  1. I will actually put a book down if the character’s name is also misleading. To me that part is very important too.

  2. characters are given full interest in the Fires of Waterland, they become the reason to follow page after page to full conclusion. they live, they live on.
    characters do drive the plot behind the theme; Livvy and Fletcher may hold the cart at a different angle, but each has his or her duty to text. they find balance in the intriguing life situations, as do Floyd and his plain and endearing wife, each a separate but necessary part of the story.

    • Hi Nadine, I still don’t know how I managed to accomplish that, in fact they do specifically drive the plot. Your reviews were very insightful, I thank you again for them, and thank you for this lovely comment! ~R

  3. Bonnie Gwyn says:

    My favorite stories/books are always the ones with eternal characters – those people who stay in our hearts forever. They definitely make the book!

  4. Red Dwyer says:

    Fab post, but I want to know the name of the horses! Beautiful artwork with this one.

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