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Saturday, 1 October 2011

My Perfect Hero is Flawed - By Shay Fabbro

I think writing heroes and heroines is the hardest part of writing. I think many (if not most) writers want to create heroes that are everything we’re NOT: perfect. It’s difficult for people to face what’s not perfect about themselves and therefore it’s easy to want to live vicariously through a character without flaws. But let’s be honest!

Readers don’t want to see page after page of ridiculous perfection.

They want characters they can relate to and the only way to do that it to create characters with flaws. But with just enough flaws to be realistic. It’s a tough balancing act, actually. I tend to give my characters flaws that are similar to my own, but exaggerated a little or just a tad different. I also use annoying tendencies I observe in other people. And if the writer REALLY knows what they’re doing, they will have their hero/heroine grow and change over the course of the book.

This is even more important in the case of a series. Nothing is worse than reading three or four books where the characters are exactly the same as they were in the first book. There must be some growth. I think this is particularly important for YA books. JK Rowling was superb in her treatment of the Harry, Ron, and Hermione. Each one grew and matured in their own way and changed over the course of the seven book series.

Shay Fabbro 

Author of the Portals of Destiny series and The Adventures of Alexis Davenport series



  1. Hi Shay

    Thanks for Guest Blogging on the topic of writing Heroes and Heroines. This post is a great on the subject of creating believeable characters/heroes.

    One of the best pieces of writing advice I ever received was for characters to be fully "rounded" and believeable they have to come with the good, the bad, and the ugly.
    In that all important scene where they act completely out of character you have make it clear that they do not act this way normally, to remain true to the characteristics you've outlined already and set expectations for later.

    I'd love to hear what everyone else thinks on this subject.

    Thanks Again


  2. Must see if we can work out what your irratating habits are! I agree no good f they are perfect - tres boring! good blog


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