Creating a perfect character usually isn’t a good idea, so
you might want to consider giving your characters a few well thought out flaws.
There needs to be something internally that prevents them from reaching their
goals or something that stops them from being the most wonderful/impressive
person in the room.
Here are a few tips on
writing character flaws:
No one’s perfect, so your characters shouldn’t be either. We
all have both negative and positive traits—some that drive people crazy and
some that people talk about affectionately (Also, this depends on who you talk
to). Maybe we have great ideas, but we never take the initiative to execute
them properly. Flaws will help balance out your characters and make them feel
real. This should be something beyond “I’m so awkward it’s adorable” or “I’m so
pretty/handsome, but I don’t know it”.
Tie them into the
It’s super important that these flaws play into the plot
somehow or they run the risk of falling flat for your readers. If your
character is notoriously lazy or lacks motivation, how will this affect the rest
of the story? Will your character have trouble snapping into action? If you don’t
do something with these flaws, there’s no point in mentioning them. A great
example is Ned Stark from Game of Thrones. He is loyal/honorable to a fault and
it causes huge problems for him later down the line. Being honorable isn’t
necessarily a bad thing, but depending on the story, it can cause a character’s
Get to know your
Creating great character flaws really comes down to knowing
your characters on a deeper level. Some writers throw in flaws that don’t
really matter because they don’t know what to do with their characters. Maybe
they haven’t thought out the story enough or maybe they’re afraid readers will
see their characters in a negative light. The truth is we like reading about
people who are flawed because they feel real and relatable. There’s no one in
the world who does the right thing all the time. Do some planning before you
start penning your novel and you’ll be able to shape who your character really
is and what they want.