The Weakness.

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When I think about characters, they start out perfect. My gamer geek is actually a hot as hell bimbo blonde who kicks butt, my teachers are wonderful caring people that want to nurture and such… and of course there’s the guys.

The first drafts of my guys are super model-quins who love unconditionally and overlook all the faults of those leading ladies.

But, um that’s kind of boring.

And, you know… unrealistic.

I’m not saying that your characters can’t fit into stereotypes. Hell, a certain amount of that is expected when you read a story because it helps the reader fill in the blanks. What I am saying is that you have to give them faults in order to make it real. Even Clark Kent wore eyeglasses so we wouldn’t immediately* see him as the perfection that is superman.

So, the question here is–how do we write characters that have these faults but are still believable as the types we want them to be? Sure prescription glasses are something, but I mean other more interesting faults that people can relate to. One that comes to mind is clumsy Bella in Twilight. To me, this really stuck out, so I guess what I am wanting to see is characters that have flaws that blend into the story and make it better. Ugh… that kind of sounds hard just thinking about it.

So, now that I’ve decided the answer isn’t just some really kickin’ eyeglass frames, I have a lot of thinking to do about characters and their flaws. Which means I am going to turn it over you, dear readers…

So, what flaws do you like to see in your books?

*Why can I never spell immediately right the first time? I feel like I should write it 100x on a sheet of notebook paper just to learn it.

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  1. I love deliciously flawed characters (whoops, I typed “thawed” that first time, which must mean I have ice cream on the brain).

    To me, Jennifer Crusie is the master of creating characters completely riddled with flaws but unbelievably easy to relate to. I would love to be her when I grow up (or if that’s not possible, to at least sleep with one of her beautifully flawed heroes).

    .-= Tawna Fenske´s last blog ..Matt the Cat’s wild ride =-.

  2. I like sexism. I mean, if it’s a man I like to see him be a ‘man’ complete with jealousy, bad temper, mixed in with gruff.

    In first drafts though I like to make them as over the top as possible. That way the editing process brings them back to reality. 🙂
    .-= Jeannie´s last blog ..Writing Prompt: Siblings =-.

    1. @Jeannie, Oh, I like that too. It’s a good stereotypical flaw that most people HAVE just in varying degrees…

  3. Oh Jamie,
    My characters are kind of a Mary Sue if I let them stay as in first drafts LOL.
    I love them dearly so no flaw at all, no bad decision. It’s on revisions I work hard on what has to be changed.
    Trying to decide on how to make them suffer right now.
    .-= Anna Serra i Vidal´s last blog ..Changing projects =-.

    1. @Anna Serra i Vidal, yes that’s what I do… I love them so I want their lives to be all perfect and crap… if only…

  4. I like a protagonist to be proactive, not reactive. I hate it when a character just gets carried along with the story. Some of my fave heroines stand up and do something game changing in the story. Sometimes, that means making a mistakes. Faults which influence the story are kinda cool. After all, don’t our flaws take our lives on a different course, for better or for worse?
    .-= @jmartinlibrary´s last blog ..Flawless =-.

  5. Hmm…my characters tend to be horribly flawed. They’re not hot (and they know it)–they’re continually sticking their foot in their mouth (much like me, and I do need to do some public apologies for recent events)–they’re uninterested in making good choices (like facing their futures head-on or hiding things from their team mates)–and, somehow, they always come out ahead. Ah, if my life was so simple.

    1. @Chantal Kirkland, public apologies? HAHA what does THAT mean? Crap am I in trouble?

      1. @Jamie, No…You’re not in trouble…me, I’m in trouble. I totally made a poor choice (I do this about once a year) and now should probably go eat some crow–but the person that I was such a giant jerk to–yeah, they’re too nice to really rake me over the coals, so I kinda am feeling like a public apology (because an execution would be too nice) is in order. Maybe Wednesday night at the International House of Yum.

      2. @Chantal Kirkland, oh SNAP! Public apology would really stress me out!

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