Handy Hints
Tips and advice on ways to improve our writing, story telling and performing.
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Post by manfredvijars » Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:22 am


For many of our readers, nothing is more important than characters. Do we like these people? Can we relate to them? Are they good role models? If the answers to any of these questions are in any way disappointing, our readers may conclude the entire work is boring or pointless.
  • Characters do not have to be likeable or admirable to be interesting.
    An unlikeable character can change and grow
    Change and growth do not necessarily ensure a character's happiness.
There are certain qualities or attributes common to interesting to characters. There is some sort of conflict or struggle. There has to be a crisis and the crisis often includes some sort of reckoning with the past as well as the self.

Our great writers hardly ever write about nice people. In Lawson's, "The way I Treated Father", there is conflict, crisis, reckoning with the past and reckoning with self.

Even when Lawson wrote about 'nice' characters like "Corny Bill", he used conflict and crisis to develop an interesting character.

And what about "Sweeney"? What makes this piece stand out in Lawson's works?

Neville Briggs
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Re: Characters

Post by Neville Briggs » Thu Jun 26, 2014 9:03 am

Bryce Courtney once said that we should remember that the reader is a character in our story. I think that's an insight worth coming to grips with.
" Prose is description, poetry is presence " Les Murray.

Bob Pacey
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Re: Characters

Post by Bob Pacey » Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:10 pm

Shit I hope you get better sooon Manfred you have to much time on ya hands.

The purpose in life is to have fun.
After you grasp that everything else seems insignificant !!!

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Maureen K Clifford
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Re: Characters

Post by Maureen K Clifford » Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:43 pm

Adding a character to a poem adds a depth to it where the reader can feel somewhat like a bystander - watching the play and hearing the dialogue . Where would the man from snowy river be without the cast of characters in it? And Neville's comment about Bryce Courtney's observation would be hard to argue with as well. Historical stories in particular I think lend themselves to having a character/MC in their lines as do lines with a moral - easier to incorporate with a character to draw on rather than just baldy stating the facts and sticking it to people.
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