|Photo by Blueprint, Morguefile.com|
Confession time: The writer in me does, at times, become tempted to have a character do something he or she would never do. Why? To set up an event I need in the plot. But as a reader, this device leaves me cold and disappointed. I want, at the very least, the character to recognize what he’s doing and have a reason for doing it. Otherwise, I stop believing in that character. The magic is gone; the fictional balloon is popped. Bozo puts on a disappointed face and wags his finger (which is never good).
Have you ever stumbled over a character that did something unbelievable in order to serve the plot? Did you throw the book away or shrug this off and read on?
Writers, have you ever been tempted to have a character do something that doesn’t work for his or her personality (and hope no one notices—especially Bozo)?