Indirect Characterization

Fleshing out characters with believable human qualities is an art. Indirect characterization is writing that paints in character detail by showing rather than telling. Rather than only tell readers about characters’ personalities and values, you can reveal them subtly through dialogue, actions and appearances. Read these tips and examples from books:

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4 thoughts on “Indirect Characterization

    1. I agree. It’s a bit of a trick to get it right too, I think. And to have this and the description of the character match up. I remember one book I reviewed, one of my big critiques was that the authors always had the other characters telling us how dangerous and manipulative the protagonist was, but the protagonist acted mostly sulky and naive, and manipulated no one and nothing. It took me a while to determine it wasn’t intended as irony. I gave up reading that one in disgust (and that takes work, I’m one for waiting and seeing because you never know)!


      1. True! Having recently finished a novel in which the characters accomplished pretty much thing but drinking beer and eating dinner, all those tricky bits are fresh in my mind.

        Liked by 1 person

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