How much do you identify with your characters in your life?
I’m sure we have wondered about this when reading fiction and wanted to ask the author this. Today I have Ruchi Singh on my blog. Let’s hear her take on this same question.
Take it away, Ruchi!
Thank you Summerita for having me on your blog!
Before I answer the question, let’s examine the process of characterization. Any work of fiction starts with a germ of an idea which can be character or plot based. This idea can be picked up from a trait in one’s partner/ friend or an incident which the author has read or come across, or any other event happening around the world. Then the protagonists’ biographies are thought through and their personalities are chalked out.
In the example above, I totally identify with the characters at the beginning. This doesn’t mean that the characterization is over by any means. As the product takes shape the characters start asserting their own whims and fancies. They might want the author to add a quirk or two or they might demand to delete certain personality traits given to them. It may happen that the initial real-life trait has to be discarded altogether.
By the end of the churning of the initial idea, adding layers of plots, characters and sub-characters motivations, the real-life germ should shine as state-of-the-art fiction. At this point in time I may not relate with them at all. Or it may happen vice-versa; I may start with a fictional character, with whom I may identify with at the end of the story.
The degree of identification, with reality of life experiences, keeps changing with the changes in the character arc. There is no right answer. Or in other words, all the answers would be correct. As writers or authors, we should be flexible and open-minded during the first draft, because the traits of a character evolve throughout the writing phase i.e. till the story is complete.
The genre that I am currently writing requires larger-than-life ideas and setting for the story to be truly entertaining, so the real-life experiences are unlikely to manifest in the characters.
As they say fiction writing is more of an art, the rules of the game are never the same. I would like to conclude with one last thought, as a good human being and citizen, I identify with all the positive traits of my characters. J
Instantly attracted to Priya, Abhimanyu knows getting involved with a married woman is inviting trouble. But despite common sense, cautions and hesitations, he is drawn to help her.
Happily ever after has become a myth for Priya and trying to keep the relationship platonic is becoming more and more difficult for Abhimanyu.
In the tussle between ethics, fears and desires… will Priya embrace a second chance at happiness?
Meet the Author
Ruchi Singh is a novelist, and writes in two genres; romance and romantic thriller. She has a degree in Electronics Engineering and has worked as Quality Consultant in the IT field. She began her writing career writing short stories and articles, which have been published on various online forums. She has been a contributing author to many anthologies and has published her first book Take 2, which is a contemporary romance with a spice of social drama.A voracious reader, she loves everything—from classics to memoirs to editorials to chick-lit, but her favourite genre is ‘romantic thriller’. Besides writing and reading, her other interests include dabbling with Indian classical dance forms.