Creating Character Profiles: Simple, Complex, Visual, and Intense

Standard

When creating characters it’s important to understand them, and as you know, character profiles are useful tools that help bring them to life. I mentioned this in my post about How to Create Believable Characters for Your Book. I will be going over four intensities of character profiles and their uses. I will also link my example profiles with them.

Simple:(Full credit for this list goes to Jenna Moreci. Check out her videos on YouTube for a more detailed explanation.)

This is the bare minimum you need to know about your character to make them believable. This where you might want to begin when building a character. It’ll help figure them out before you start writing.

  1. Roles
  2. Motivation
  3. Life Experiences
  4. Strengths
  5. Weaknesses

You will want all five categories to interact with each other in some way to make the start of a complex character. ALL CHARACTERS NEED TO HAVE THIS PROFILE.

Complex:

This is where you start expand on some unique and individual traits for your character. This will get you more in-touch with your character, which will help you in the writing process. You will be able to see your character more clearly after you make this profile for them.

  • Name
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Birthday
  • Astrology Sign
  • Origin: where they born and/or raised
  • Physical Description
  • Marital Status:
  • Family: siblings, parents, etc…
  • Background Story: brief summary of their life
  • Language: what they speak and read/write
  • Friends and Allies
  • Enemies and Villains
  • Dreams/Life Goals
  • Best Quality
  • Worst Quality
  • Strengths
  • Weakness
  • Fears
  • Talents/Powers/Abilities

With this template you’ll be able to see your character come to life. You can alter this list as you want, but this just some basic traits you’ll need to know if you want to understand your character.

Visual:

This profile is similar to the complex profile, except that it is organized in a more visually appealing way. It’s something you’d want to print off and look at once in a while, while writing. It’s not too difficult to make and you can customize as you want. It’s handy to have nearby when you need to quickly find some information about your character. This can be more simple or even more complex than what I have at the moment.

character-profile-visual

Feel free to use this profile, but please credit me if you post it online.

character-profile-visual

SocEcoStat: is my abbreviation for Socioeconomic Status

LGBTQ: is my abbreviation for Sexuality

❤ Xp: is my abbreviation for sexual/romantic experience.

Intense: (I want to credit Jenna Moreci for the majority of this list as well. I did some tweaking, but I got the majority of this list from her videos and blog.)

This is the profile you use when you want to know as many details as possible about your character. This is the profile you’ll want to use for your main characters. You can add even more traits than the ones I have. There are some character profiles that have 100 traits! It all depends on how well you need to know your character. If you have a hard time imagining a character and getting inside their heads, this is where this profile comes in handy. If you’re like me and I can get into my characters’ heads pretty easily, then this might just be a lot of writing for something you already know.

character-profile

And there you have it. The most important thing I want you to take from this, is that there is no one way to do a character profile. You will have to find what works for you and your characters. Always adapt what you find on the internet to fit your needs and wants. I encourage you to take inspiration from this blog post and change it!

Thank you for reading,

-Lalia LaRose

 

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