Category Archives: Characters

SECRETS of the Protagonist…

By Melanie Anne Phillips The Protagonist is one of the most misunderstood characters in a story’s structure.  It is often assumed that this character is a typical “Hero” who is a good guy, the central character in the story, and … Continue reading

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Characters: The Attributes of Age

By Melanie Anne Phillips Writers tend to create characters that are more or less the same age as themselves. On the one hand, this follows the old adage that one should write about what one knows. But in real life, … Continue reading

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Writing from a Character’s Point of View

By Melanie Anne Phillips Perhaps the best way to instill real feelings in a character is to stand in his or her shoes and write from the character’s point of view. Unfortunately, this method also holds the greatest danger of … Continue reading

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Character Introductions

By Melanie Anne Phillips Some stories introduce characters as people and then let the reader/audience discover their roles and relationships afterward. This tends to help an audience identify with the characters. Other stories put roles first, so that we know … Continue reading

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Don’t Forget Your Character Dismissals!

By Melanie Anne Phillips Over the course of the story, your reader/audience has come to know your characters and to feel for them. The story doesn’t end when your characters and their relationships reach a climax. Rather, the reader/audience will … Continue reading

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Male vs. Female Problem Solving

By Melanie Anne Phillips All too often in stories, relationships and interchanges between characters of different sexes come off stilted, unbelievable, or contrived. In fact, since the author is writing from the perspective of only one of the two sexes, … Continue reading

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Should Your Main Character Be Linear or Holistic?

By Melanie Anne Phillips This article is excerpted from text I wrote in Dramatica Story Structure Software.  It describes one of key story structure choices you need to make if your Main Character is to ring true at a fundamental level.  Here’s … Continue reading

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Your Characters’ Personal Goals

By Melanie Anne Phillips Although a personal goal for each character is not absolutely essential, at some point your readers or audience is going to wonder what is driving each character to brave the trials and obstacles. If you haven’t … Continue reading

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How to Create Great Characters!

By Melanie Anne Phillips Here’s a video I recorded a few years ago, based on one of my more popular articles about creative writing and story structure. What makes a character “great?”  Probably not what you think… Need personalized story … Continue reading

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YOUR STORY WILL FAIL ( If you don’t have this… )

By Melanie Anne Phillips The compilation video below (used in  my class on story structure and complied by Chris Huntley) really illustrates the philosophical conflict between the Main Character and the Influence Character, which is the heart of your story’s message. … Continue reading

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