Writer's Lounge Need advice? Want to give advice? Come on in and share ideas with your fellow writers. Just remember, all fics go in the main forum.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1    
Old August 8th, 2010 (7:11 PM).
Teh Blazer's Avatar
Teh Blazer Teh Blazer is offline
Divider of Zero
     
    Join Date: Feb 2009
    Location: 'MERICA
    Age: 22
    Gender: Male
    Nature: Relaxed
    Posts: 770

    I wanna write a fanfic to hone my very poor skills as a writer. Yep, that's pretty much it. Oh yeah, the question...

    When you have a main character, do you tend to describe the character, or do you tend to not describe him/her and let the mind create an image? And why?
    Also, which one do you think is better?

    __________________

    Being a hero is overrated anyways

    Reply With Quote

    Relevant Advertising!

      #2    
    Old August 8th, 2010 (7:23 PM).
    Dagzar's Avatar
    Dagzar Dagzar is offline
    The Dreamer
       
      Join Date: Jan 2009
      Location: In my dreams.
      Gender: Female
      Nature: Relaxed
      Posts: 444

      I say it’s better not to describe the main character right off the bat. Maybe describe something that people would notice when they meet him or her like weird clothing choices or maybe your character has a scar on his face. Readers will create their own vision of the character without your input, so there’s little need to provide a full out description.

      While I did describe my main character quite a bit when I first introduced her (didn't really know better), I haven’t mentioned much about her appearance since.

      __________________

      "After being saddled with two ten-year-old brats and being sent out on her long overdue Pokemon journey, she can’t help but wonder… is it worth it?"

      Reply With Quote
        #3    
      Old August 8th, 2010 (7:32 PM).
      Astinus's Avatar
      Astinus Astinus is offline
      Remember NovEnder
         
        Join Date: May 2006
        Location: Connecticut, USA
        Age: 30
        Gender: Male
        Posts: 9,984

        Personally, what I do is skip on the physical description unless it's important to the character. For example, I don't describe one of my character's physical looks because it has no bearing on who she is and what she does. On the other hand, I do describe another character's physical traits because they're an important part of how he sees his world, the people around him, what he thinks of them, and what he thinks they think of him.

        What I do describe is the character's feelings, no matter what. To me, that's what's important to the story. How the character feels and thinks, so you should show that. It makes them more real.

        So yeah. I personally don't find physical description that important to describe unless it affects them as a person.

        (This is really confusing, so ask for clarification if need be.)

        __________________

        Now nobody, nobody, nobody, nobody speaks my name
        I'm just another blister in the mouth of shame
        A bug in Ender's Game

        Reply With Quote
          #4    
        Old August 8th, 2010 (9:59 PM).
        Yuoaman's Avatar
        Yuoaman Yuoaman is offline
        Legen- wait for it...
        • Silver Tier
         
        Join Date: Jul 2005
        Location: Ontario, Canada
        Age: 25
        Gender: Male
        Nature: Relaxed
        Posts: 4,675

        Don't dump a ton of information about your character at any one time, it's a horrible thing to do and it pulls the reader out of the story very quickly. Slowly reveal details of the character's appearance over a period of time that is dependent on whether you're writing in third or first person (I don't write in second person, so I can't help with that).

        In first person details like that are naturally going to be revealed more slowly, unless the character has a habit of looking at their reflection often (which is a valid thing to do for a vain character). The details are only going to be revealed when the character notices a change in themselves or notices the reaction of another to their appearance (e.g. The man recoiled visibly when my hat was removed, the myriad of scars crisscrossing my face have a habit of doing so to those faint of heart.).

        In third person you can reveal them a tad more often as in third person it is a character watching the scene from an external viewpoint and the appearances of characters can be noted without interrupting the flow too badly (e.g. James removed his dark grey cloak and revealed that he had been wearing a rusted chain mail shirt the entire time, despite his claims of not having any gear of his own. The shirt had obviously been of a high quality at one point in time, a fact that made the others in his group reconsider the well-muscled 'street tough' who had been traveling with them thus far. Though his hands were calloused like those of a warrior, they were clean, meaning his story about living on the street was definitely concocted. When one of his companions made as if to speak James glared at them with his piercing grey eyes, ending any possible discussion on the matter.) If you notice, throughout the example information is given slowly, while the story continues around it. A bad example is one where all the information is given at one time and nothing happens at that time. (e.g. James was a tall man with grey piercing eyes, and beneath his dark grey cloak he was wearing a rusted mail shirt that had been fine at one point.

        This is also a case of 'show but don't tell'. It is always much better to show a character's trait rather than telling us it. "He towered over those in his group." is much better than "He was tall." in anything.

        __________________


        Suit Up!
        Awesome REGULAR MEMBER THAT OCCASIONALLY FREQUENTS FORUMS.

        "pps new screenie" - No, really shut up yuoaman.

        Haaave you read my LP?
        Pokémon Quartz - The only one of mine really worth reading.

        What about my [Un]Abridged series?
        Aquaman the Unabridged Parody Series - Language warning.

        The Playbook: My Anime List | Raptr | BackLoggery | Twitter

        83% of this signature is empty space.

        -dary!

        Reply With Quote
        Reply
        Quick Reply

        Sponsored Links
        Thread Tools

        Posting Rules
        You may not post new threads
        You may not post replies
        You may not post attachments
        You may not edit your posts

        BB code is On
        Smilies are On
        [IMG] code is On
        HTML code is Off

        Forum Jump


        All times are GMT -8. The time now is 1:37 PM.