Monday, February 7, 2011

The Do's and Don'ts of Paranormal Characters
Hey, guys, this is my first post. Well, besides the question post, I guess. I’m going to talk about characters from paranormal novels. This includes paranormal creatures, humans, and humans with psychic abilities.
Let’s start the Do’s and Don’ts of Paranormal Characters.
v  Be original. Trust me; people absolutely love it when you’re original. They eat it up.
v  Give your character flaws. Your character can have many powers, and be a good person but they still need flaws. Let me tell you about one of my favorite characters ever. Danny Fenton/Danny Phantom. He has many, many, many powers and he’s a half-ghost. (He’s also a cartoon character, so we can cut him some slack.) He can fly, shoot lasers out of many places, fly, super strength, ghostly wail, ice powers, etc. But he also has flaws. He’s ansty, jealous, impatient, and has quite the temper. And no one lets him get away with stuff. And that’s why I love Butch Hartman (hint, hint) and Danny.

v  Give realism to your character. Like I said flaws help, but other things that make them very human-like will amuse your reader. Give them a quirk, a hobby, a purpose, something they care about. Even ghosts and psychics have their hobbies and pet peeves.
v  Give one of your characters an awesome ability or skill. This isn’t completely necessary but I find it cool. This goes back to the being original. I would love to see what kind of visions and dreams you can come with your characters, or what kind of abilities and powers they could have. A few years back, dream walking was just coming out and everyone loved it because it was something new and fresh.
v  Don’t go to extremes. This seems to be a problem at times when it comes down to the personality of your paranormal characters. Some people make the character—especially a female, very weak. And needy. Very needy. Then it’s the other extreme of a girl who’s snarky twenty four/seven. It annoys me even more. You can have a balance. If your main character is weak, try to have her grow stronger through the series. If your main character feels being snarky to people just for saying hi, please don’t. Use the right timing—If she’s mad, or stressed, is easier for us to understand her anger, but don’t rely too much on that. Also show us a softer side of them, so we can root for her.
v  Don’t make the love interest overprotective. Yes, it’s cute when the guy or the girl gets all protective of their mates. But overdoing it? It really annoys the reader. A good character that’s balanced but protective is Jesse from the MEDIATOR series. He cares about Suze, he’ll help her when there’s trouble, but he doesn’t overdo it. He knows she can take care of herself and that’s why I love Jesse.

v  Don’t rely on bad boys or snarky, yet sexy golden boy. They’re nice for a while, but if you don’t develop their personality any further….well they get  a little boring.
v  Don’t copy somebody else. It’s okay if someone has an awesome character and you get inspired by it. But don’t copy. Work on your own characters and you’ll love them even more.
Well, that’s all, guys and gals. I hope you enjoyed it.


Marisa said...

Good tips, Andrea! I agree with so many of them, and I think a lot of this is true for all characters- not just paranormal.

Jesse<3 But you knew that ;)

Nella Rosmarino said...

Thanks Marisa <3