Methods to Endear a Character to the Readers: by David Darling
Writers use various methods to endear a character to readers and make them empathize with the character's experiences, emotions, and journey. Here are some effective techniques I have researched, learned from my editor and struggled to pound into my head by repeated efforts!
1. Character Development: Create well-rounded characters with depth and complexity. Readers are more likely to empathize with characters who feel real, with strengths, weaknesses, and relatable qualities.
2. Relatable Flaws: Give your characters relatable flaws or imperfections that make them more human and relatable. Readers often find imperfect characters more endearing because they can see a bit of themselves in them.
3. Character Arcs: Show growth and development in your characters. Let them overcome challenges, change, or learn important lessons. This can make readers root for them and empathize with their struggles.
4. Internal Monologue: Allow readers to get inside the character's head. Share their thoughts, fears, hopes, and vulnerabilities. This can create a strong emotional connection between the character and the reader.
5. Sympathetic Backstory: Provide a compelling backstory that explains why the character is the way they are. If readers understand the character's past and the challenges they've faced, they are more likely to empathize with their present circumstances.
6. Show Vulnerability: Reveal moments of vulnerability or self-doubt in your character. Vulnerable moments make characters more relatable and endearing.
7. Empathy-Inducing Situations: Place your character in situations that evoke empathy from the reader. This could involve them facing injustices, experiencing loss, or struggling with relatable problems.
8. Strong Relationships: Develop meaningful relationships between the character and other characters in the story. Readers often empathize with characters through their connections and interactions with others.
9. Relatable Goals: Give your character goals and desires that readers can understand and support. When readers see a character striving for something they can relate to, they're more likely to empathize with their journey.
10. Dialogue and Interaction: Craft engaging and authentic dialogue that allows readers to connect with the character's personality and values. The way a character interacts with others can reveal a lot about their character.
11. Humor and Wit: Incorporate humor or wit in the character's personality. Making readers laugh with or at the character can create a fondness for them.
12. Consistency: Ensure that your character's actions and emotions are consistent with their established personality. Readers appreciate consistency and authenticity in character portrayal.
13. Shared Experiences: Create opportunities for readers to share experiences with the character, whether it's through common interests, emotions, or challenges.
14. Evocative Descriptions: Use descriptive language to evoke the senses and emotions tied to the character. Help readers visualize and feel what the character experiences.
15. Endearing Traits: Highlight positive traits, like kindness, empathy, courage, or resilience. These traits can make the character more endearing to readers.
That is a lot to roll into each character, but think of it when you're writing. Creating a Character Journal (maybe a page per character) is also a good idea. Especially when referencing their hair color, height, or personality. I keep a journal and it helps me remain consistent.
Hopefully you have found the information helpful, and if you have anything further to add, let me know!!