Ask a male author about your male character traits or thoughts.

Amazon links to my stories: Autumn Breeze, A More Perfect Union, Double Happiness, The Wolves of Sherwood Forest, Neanderthals and the Garden of Eden can be found down the right side of the blog.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Men free from their bindings

Happy Father’s Day to my dad fans and to my lady readers, treat your man today to something he loves (like you).

Many writers go way overboard when it comes to writing a male character. They’ll take too seriously the architypes and then produce a comic book character. They’ll stick too closely to the Journey [a good source: Writer’s Journey by Vogler] as the hero meets mentors, antagonists, tricksters and reacts in a way the plot seems to demand. If he acts oddly, this might give your story a twist that would delight the reader.

Making your hero real, is not simply giving him flaws but making him an individual. Every individual is unique and so should your very memorable character be.

If you write a guy and fill in his personality partially based on back-story, you’ll be doing yourself a favor. If he’s a Navy Seal and likes to crochet, so be it. Or if he prefers Poodles to German Shepherds, well you have a lot to write about when you explain why. These are not flaws; they're more like charms, which will make your character almost magical and may put a smile on a reader’s face.

Now let's retool that father mentioned at the beginning who I suggested wanted your love as a gift today:
How to Murder Your Wife with Jack Lemmon, 1965 (the button scene)
I want you to know, I, in no way endorse or resemble Jack Lemmon's character. Those thoughts and actions have never entered my mind. His fictional character is just that fictional. Nonetheless, I feel the need to mollify my RWA girlfriends with Overboard 1987 starring Kurt Russell and Goldie Hahn, by showing the buh, buh, buh, buh scene.


  1. I love writing the male perspective. Perhaps because I've been surrounded by so many "normal" men in my life. I consider them to have more "quirks" than flaws, but do have a similar mindset about things. Same as women, some things about us as a species are boringly predictable. I have a special fondness for writing the PAYBACK type male, but would certainly never marry him in my real life.

    I get what you are saying though; more to the male POV than stereotyping. But I'm pretty sure I've had my moments of planning out my hubby's murder much as Jack Lemon did :)

    Happy Father's day Richard.

  2. Thanks, Bob, for reminding us that male characters need humanizing, not stereotyping. Yesterday we celebrated both Fathers day and our wedding anniversary. Lots of guests and fun.