The Art of Creating Compelling Characters in Fiction Books


What makes a fiction book unique and memorable? Some will say a good storyline. And others will say plot and twists in the story. But not many people will say a compelling character.

If you make a list of best fiction books, you will find one thing in common. And that factor is memorable characters. Harry Potter, Katniss Everdeen, and Jon Snow are prime examples of a book writing company.

Many people haven’t read Harry Potter, Hunger Games, or Game of Thrones. But they know the characters for sure that we have mentioned. The reason is these characters have compelling qualities. And the books are famous because of such characters. Thus, they play a vital role in making a book bestseller. So if you write a fiction book, make sure to create compelling characters.

In this article, we will discuss tips on how to create appealing fictional characters that will leave a lasting impression on your readers. So keep reading. 

7 Proven Tips for Creating Fictional Characters That Leave a Lasting Impression

No doubt, character creation is a daunting task. It’s the test of your artistic skills. But an effective approach can make the process a little easier.

Here are some proven tips for creating fictional characters that will leave a lasting impression on your readers.

1. Create Them With Depth

Do you know why readers still remember characters like Harry Potter, Jon Snow, and Sherlock? One of the reasons is these characters are created in depth. And readers like characters that feel like real people. 

So this means that they should have a depth to their personality that goes beyond their surface traits. Thus, to create characters with depth, first, consider their motivations, fears, and desires. And second, find out what flaws and weaknesses they have. And what are their strengths and values?

 The more you know about your characters, the easier it will be to bring them to life on the page.

So this is how you add depth to your fictional characters and make them compelling to the readers.

2. Make the Characters Relatable

Another way to make the characters compelling is to make them relatable. 

Readers connect with characters more if they can relate to them on some level. One way to make them relatable is to give them common struggles or challenges that a common person faces. The struggle can be of any form. It can be a fear of failure in life. Similarly, it can be an incomplete love story or a difficult family dynamic. So when readers see themselves in your characters, they will take more interest in your book

So make the characters relatable to make them more appealing. 

3. Give Them Unique Physical Features

One of the reasons readers still remember Daenerys Targaryen is her long, white-blonde hair and striking blue eyes. Similarly, they like Tyrion Lannister, another character from Game of Thrones, because of his intelligence and wisdom. 

Thus, physical appearance can also play an important role in how readers perceive characters. So try to create unique and memorable physical features for your characters that will make them stand out in readers’ minds. You can add anything from a scar or muscular body to a distinctive hairstyle or fashion sense.

So think of creative features to make the characters unique and memorable. 

4. Write Backstories

Writing a backstory is of the best ways to make a fiction book more engaging. It helps readers understand the character and storyline of the book. Moreover, it allows your audience to understand the character’s decisions in the story. 

So write a backstory to help your readers know about the past life of that character. Include flashbacks to make a connection with the past events. 

So this way, you can compel your readers to take an interest in the character and the story. 

5. Give Realistic Qualities 

People tend to remember characters that are strong and powerful. It doesn’t mean they must have a muscular body or superpowers. It just means they should have strong and influencing personalities. 

Jon Snow, Tyrion Lannister, and Sherlock are perfect examples. All these characters don’t have superpowers. But they have other qualities, such as a sharp mind and wisdom, that make them compelling.

So add unique and realistic qualities to your characters. You can show them as highly knowledgeable. Or you can describe them as influencing personalities in their circle.  

So this is another way to make your characters compelling. 

6. Good Dialogues Make a Character Compelling

Sometimes, good dialogues also make a character compelling. People tend to remember good dialogues for a long time. Also, they associate those dialogues with the characters. 

For instance, people who have read Sherlock Homes won’t forget this iconic phrase; “Elementary, my dear Watson.” And whenever they hear this phrase, they will associate it with Sherlock. Similarly, readers of Game of Thrones won’t forget this phrase from Tyrion Lannister; “I will hurt you for this. A day will come when you think you are safe and happy, and your joy will turn to ashes in your mouth. And you will know the debt is paid”.

So work on writing such catchy dialogues for your characters. It will compel your readers to remember the characters for a long time.

7. Give the Characters a Unique Voice

Another way to make characters compelling is to give them a unique voice. It’s the way the characters speak and express themselves in the story.

A unique voice allows your readers to differentiate between characters and make them feel more real.

Consider the tone,  vocabulary, and syntax while writing dialogues of your characters. Similarly, think about how their voice might change depending on the situation. 

Final Notes

Characters are the heart of fiction books. They make the story more engaging and interesting. Also, they play a vital role in making a fiction read a bestseller. So it’s important to take time and make them as real and compelling to the readers as possible.

Creating compelling and memorable fictional characters takes time and effort. But with the right approach, you can make the process a little bit easier. So follow these tips to create compelling characters. 

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