You see, where can a writer draw his characters from? Real life, right?
So if I'm looking at a little sample of people I know very well and love, here are a few examples (from mild to extreme):
- An over-sensitive person to the point of a mental condition and medication, yet that person is also very smart, loving and financially calculated.
- A person obsessed about weight, putting the fear even into that person's children, yet this intelligent person is a loving parent in all other respects.
- An alcoholic who is self absorbed and extremely jealous, yet can also be the best friend any person could ask for without asking for anything in return.
- An extremely selfish, self-absorbed person who lives in his own little invented la-la land. That person conned people out of their money, truly believing he deserves that money. And yet, that person is a caring father and a funny guy.
- And the worst - an abusive person. Although I didn't know it at the time, that person turned to be cheating and abusive, while also being a friend. This person is still a friend, and if you'd seen him with his wife and child today, you wouldn't believe the possible monster hiding in him.
So what am I saying? I'm saying people aren't one-dimensional. I'm saying that my greatest fear is to write a character that is all evil or all good or all something. Yes, one-dimensional characters can be funny (re The Simpsons :), but they're not real (and I don't know how to write funny anyways).
I think that when it comes to my main characters I'm okay, I manage multi-dimensions, but I think I'm having a bit more of a problem with the supporting characters. I believe I mentioned something about that before.
In any event, I don't understand one-dimensional even though I've been known to read several books like that. These were either bad, or had a lot to offer in other departments to offset the weak characterization. I just wonder if there's any time a one-dimensional character could be justified.
I know, this haven't been a very structured post with a well defined point to it. I just shared my thoughts. Can you tell I'm writing again? Yay!
Categories: writing, characters, process