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DwayneA
08-27-2011, 09:46 AM
Frankly, I don't care much for character development. To me, a story is about things that happen and that have a moral to them. For me, a story is just a fable, nothing more.

In fact, I'm more into stories where we see things happen, not stories about people. When Twister came out in theatres, I went to see it just for the tornadoes. I did the same thing for Dante's Peak just for the eruption. And when I saw Volcano for the first time on tv, it was just to see a city covered in lava. And last month, when I taped Gladiator, I watched the movie just for the fights. I mean come on, it's called "Gladiator", not "Russel Crowe becomes a slave and fights his way to revenge."

That's why I prefer watching shows on the Discovery channel or National Geographic.

gothicangel
08-27-2011, 11:16 AM
Frankly, I don't care much for character development. To me, a story is about things that happen and that have a moral to them. For me, a story is just a fable, nothing more.

In fact, I'm more into stories where we see things happen, not stories about people. When Twister came out in theatres, I went to see it just for the tornadoes. I did the same thing for Dante's Peak just for the eruption. And when I saw Volcano for the first time on tv, it was just to see a city covered in lava. And last month, when I taped Gladiator, I watched the movie just for the fights. I mean come on, it's called "Gladiator", not "Russel Crowe becomes a slave and fights his way to revenge."

That's why I prefer watching shows on the Discovery channel or National Geographic.

Well, that's fine for you. Just don't expect to be able to sell those kind of stories.

Re: Gladiator. Who is the Gladiator? The MC, of course. The film isn't about a Gladiator, but about Maximus.

TLPhillps
08-27-2011, 11:28 AM
I have to respectfully disagree with the idea that those kinds of stories don't sell, Non-fiction sells all the time. In regards to undeveloped characters in a fiction work, well not to be mean or rude but, in my opinion if you want a story to have a 'moral' you have to develop the characters a little so that there is a moral. I mean with no character development in a story about a guy fighting another guy we have no idea why they are fighting. Are they fighting simply because they like to fight? If so, then why do they like to fight. Of course this is just my personal opinion and you can take from it what you like and shove the rest....right into the garbage can where it belongs. Good Luck and Happy Writing!

blacbird
08-27-2011, 11:29 AM
Frankly, I don't care much for character development. To me, a story is about things that happen and that have a moral to them. For me, a story is just a fable, nothing more.

In fact, I'm more into stories where we see things happen, not stories about people. When Twister came out in theatres, I went to see it just for the tornadoes. I did the same thing for Dante's Peak just for the eruption. And when I saw Volcano for the first time on tv, it was just to see a city covered in lava. And last month, when I taped Gladiator, I watched the movie just for the fights. I mean come on, it's called "Gladiator", not "Russel Crowe becomes a slave and fights his way to revenge."

That's why I prefer watching shows on the Discovery channel or National Geographic.

Okay. Nothing wrong with any of that. Except why do you obsess in other forums about matters relating to fiction? Why not go write non-fiction about volcanoes and tornadoes and the like?

caw

DwayneA
08-27-2011, 11:36 AM
from what I've heard, Twister was criticized for its lack of character development. Yet since I know absolutely nothing about character development, I have no clue what they're talking about.

And besides, there are so many non-fiction books about those kinds of stuff, so there's no need for me to write one.

TLPhillps
08-27-2011, 11:41 AM
Sorry have to ask this one. If you know absolutely nothing about character development how do you know you don't care about it?

P.S. If you have questions about it, how to do it, what it means, stuff like that feel free to pm me I'm great at it (well I like to think so anyway)

Good Luck and Happy Writing

scarletpeaches
08-27-2011, 11:48 AM
Well done on completely ignoring the meaning of the words 'subtext' or 'subtlety'.

Me? I prefer books and films that don't beat me over the head with the obvious.

TLPhillps
08-27-2011, 12:00 PM
Okay, I'm sorry if I misunderstood what you were saying or somehow offended you. I was merely offering my opinion and offering to help. Good luck in your ventures.

blacbird
08-27-2011, 12:17 PM
Me? I prefer books and films that don't beat me over the head with the obvious.

You mean . . . your books of erotica don't beat . . . . . . ?

And to think I was about to buy one.

caw

gothicangel
08-27-2011, 12:57 PM
I have to respectfully disagree with the idea that those kinds of stories don't sell, Non-fiction sells all the time. In regards to undeveloped characters in a fiction work, well not to be mean or rude but, in my opinion if you want a story to have a 'moral' you have to develop the characters a little so that there is a moral. I mean with no character development in a story about a guy fighting another guy we have no idea why they are fighting. Are they fighting simply because they like to fight? If so, then why do they like to fight. Of course this is just my personal opinion and you can take from it what you like and shove the rest....right into the garbage can where it belongs. Good Luck and Happy Writing!

Well, I think non-fiction gives the game away in the category. Why do autobiographies still sell by the millions 40 years after they are written? Characters.

Since when does characterization equate with insertion of morals? I don't write to preach. I write thrillers with kick-ass stories, and characters who like to kick-ass. :D

Marcus loves to fight. He believes heart and soul in the glory of Rome. He's a warrior, it's in his character.

dpaterso
08-27-2011, 01:50 PM
Frankly, I don't care much for character development. To me, a story is about things that happen and that have a moral to them.
Me too, more often than not -- and that's what's wrong with the stories I write. My characters come across like blocks of stone, emotionally uninvolved, with blank personalities.

So I cheat. Even though I don't completely agree with the need, I go back and tweak my main character's attitude and emotions just a little bit, to keep those pesky readers who want character development happy.

The characters then seem more involved with the story, which helps get the reader involved and interested, too. Which is the entire point.

-Derek

Linda Adams
08-27-2011, 02:31 PM
I think maybe stop focusing on what you can't do and focus on playing to your strengths to get you closer to having characters who aren't so one dimensional. That way you're not battling with a weakness, but using something you've already got.

I'm a plot-focused writer, so I tend to leave out the emotions of the characters. So basically, I have to return to the scene once I get all the parts I like in and add emotions that are appropriate to the scene.

seun
08-27-2011, 02:47 PM
Frankly, I don't care much for character development. To me, a story is about things that happen and that have a moral to them. For me, a story is just a fable, nothing more.

In fact, I'm more into stories where we see things happen, not stories about people.

Is it me or do these two statements contradict each other?

CACTUSWENDY
08-27-2011, 06:15 PM
Then it would be safe to say you enjoy/are driven by action. Some books are character driven, some not. I guess that's why there are different types/styles.

Best wishes to you in your work.

Jamesaritchie
08-27-2011, 07:04 PM
I mean come on, it's called "Gladiator", not "Russel Crowe becomes a slave and fights his way to revenge."

.

Yes, but the movie is still about character, first scene to last.

Without character, action is meaningless. It's fine to feel as you do, if it works for you, but it sure isn't the way to write good fiction that lasts.

Fiction is all about character, and great fiction is both exciting and about people, just as Gladiator is.

I love Discovery and National Geographic, as well, but at least 90% of the shows I watch on those channels are also about character. In a very real sense, even the animal shows on these channels are about character.

If they aren't, what do they matter? It's always how action affects people that makes it meaningful.

I was going to say that otherwise, you may as well stick to Saturday morning cartoons, but then I realized most of those are about character, as well.

Character is what readers remember long after the action is forgotten. Be it Maximus, Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes, or Huckleberry Finn, the character stays in memory long after plot and action fade away.

Monkey
08-27-2011, 07:04 PM
Me too, more often than not -- and that's what's wrong with the stories I write. My characters come across like blocks of stone, emotionally uninvolved, with blank personalities.

So I cheat. Even though I don't completely agree with the need, I go back and tweak my main character's attitude and emotions just a little bit, to keep those pesky readers who want character development happy.

The characters then seem more involved with the story, which helps get the reader involved and interested, too. Which is the entire point.

-Derek

I do something like this. I know the character's motivation, but it doesn't always come out in my writing. And the action keeps the story moving too fast for the character to have a lot of "head time."

In my second draft, I go back and look for every single spot where I could have given a touch more insight--a glance, an interpretation, a quick thought. I make sure the character's narrative has a consistent voice and POV, that their view of the world around them gives the reader an idea of how they think.

So far, that's been enough for me.

But my current WIP calls for something else. My MC and her son are being held against their will. They just went through a torture session. Now they have the rest of the night--where they're being watched by cameras--and most of the next day before anything else happens. They have time to reflect, to deal with their traumas, to work out issues between themselves, and to decide how they're going to handle things from here on out. Since the son is mostly quiet and there's nowhere to go, this entire chapter is largely "head time" for my MC.

This is my first draft, and I haven't re-read yet, but I'm sure this is going to be the hardest part of my book, probably the hardest scene I've ever written. (And as an aside, if any of you fantastic writers would like to give me your hints and advice, I'd appreciate it.)

What I'm hoping, though, is that this will pay off for the reader in a way that another action scene would not. It should add depth, maybe bring the reader further in. When my MC kills the man who tortured her, I want the reader to feel what she feels. I don't know that I could get that entirely through action.