Friday, January 6, 2012

What Makes A Fictional Character Memorable?

What makes a fictional character memorable?

I think the character has to have a quirkiness (Randle McMurphy in Ken Kessey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest; the misogynistic, conceited Sherlock Holmes; or any of the supporting characters in books like Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland, Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series), strong motivation (Inspector Javert's unyielding pursuit of Valjean in Victor Hugo's Les Miserables or Captain Ahab's relentless quest for Moby Dick), or in some way personifies the human condition in a way in which readers can relate (any of Dicken's characters - Bob Cratchett, a father trying desperately to provide for his family at Christmas in A Christmas Carol; Oliver Twist, a homeless orphan; Miss Havisham, the bitter, jilted spinster of Great Expectations).

Who are your most memorable fictional characters and what has made them stand out all these years in your mind?

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