Hi, I was wondering if you could help me out. I am trying to write a story. It's about a girl who has been isolated by her family. She rebels and sneaks out at night. I would describe her as cold and closed. Her parents get murdered because they work with the people who are ruining sort of everything in the country. She had no idea as for why, but she will find out. She wants revenge. It id a story about a girl who is finding herself and connecting with her feelings. Is this cliché? Any tips?😊
There is potential for cliche, but it depends on how you develop it going forward, because there are ways to make it work. There are definitely some questions about the world and this girl that need to be addressed creatively that can really help make it work.
The Main Character:
- First, let’s develop her a little. Cold and closed is a start, but it’s not everything we need to have a main character. And honestly, if she’s too cold and closed, she may not be too relatable or even likable to readers. We need someone to root for in this girl or else we won’t care about her story, right?
Strong Female Characters: (x)
-Second, let’s think a little about her position thus far:
- Why was she isolated by her parents? Does she know their reasons? Does she understand them, even a little bit?
- How has this isolation affected her? Is she scared of the world? Curious about it? (By running away, it seems more like the latter, which also indicates that she is not so 100% ‘closed’ as she first appears- she is used to isolation but craves something bigger)
- What is her relationship with her parents? Does she hate them for locking her away? Love them because they’re the only people she really knows? Are they kind to her or strict or abusive? Does it pain her to disappoint them by running away?
- How much does she know about the outside world? Was she kept entirely in the dark about most things, or does she have a general idea of how most things work?
You also have something interesting going on with this world here that can be very intriguing and again, leaves us wanting to know some more.
- Who is “ruining everything in the country?” Why? How much support do they have? What actions are they taking? What is their goal? Who opposes them?
- Why do her parents work for these people? Do they agree with their goals? Or are they forced into it?
- What exactly causes them to be murdered? Did they take some action they were not supposed to? Were they killed by their own side or those who oppose them?
- Does their daughter know about and/or agree with their roles and actions?
- Is the girl capable of navigating this world outside her home on her quest for revenge or does she need help?
You also have some great ideas going for your story. You world is interesting, and you know how you want your character to development. A “story about a girl who is finding herself and connecting with her feelings” is a good idea for sure. This girl, her position, her world, give you a lot to go with developmentally, and I think her mental and emotional journey is a great opportunity for representing the “character arc”, with a lot of room to grow and learn.
But your world in itself is so interesting, I have to wonder if that is really all the story is. Yes, this girl’s growth is definitely a huge part of the plot, but it’s more the mental/emotional part. Don’t forget to spend some time thinking not just about the metas, but the physical parts, the actions and plot points that mark turning points in her own adventure- the journey, in a word, the specific actions taken on her quest for revenge.
I also want to know about any supporting characters and how she interacts with different people, especially keeping in mind her background. Is she excited when she meets new people? Shy? Does she use her cold demeanor to avoid others because she feels strange and afraid because she doesn’t know how to interact? How do her relationships change and develop with her development emotionally?
But the big important message I want to tell you is this:
Every story can sound a little cliche if you only sum it up in a few details. It’s the care and development that goes into it that really brings it to life and makes it into something special. Don’t spend too much time and energy worrying about being too cliche. It’s a work in progress.
And for a work in progress, let me tell you, you have some real good things going. You’ve got some good stuff to work with already, so keep at it, darling!