Re: Do Your Characters Make Enough Mistakes?

In response to Ava Jae’s blog post:

But character errors are more than just a chance to make our readers want to slam their heads into walls: they provide opportunity for character growth, great tension-filled plot points and a chance for our readers to relate to them. We all make mistakes, and reading about a character who never makes mistakes not only misses a whole slew of plot possibilities, but also makes the character significantly more difficult to relate to.

That might be true for professional books, but a lot of YA like the Twilight saga and “The Kissing Booth” by Beth Reekles (teen author), I feel THRIVE on Mary Sues. Or the plain Janes who are really perfect and even though they have nothing interesting about them, for some reason everyone in the stories love them. Even if they make “mistakes”, they don’t suffer as much. In fact, their suffering could even be another way for them to be showered with love by everyone around them. Even people who are “angry” with them, are angry because they goshdarn love them so much. (*facepalm*? Yep.)

But I think that works too because a lot of the time, people just want fluff. They don’t want to enter into a world where their characters are suffering because the reader might be going through things themselves. So why go into a story where you have to deal with someone else’s suffering along with your own? If you write the story well enough to experience things from the character’s perspective, you can still live the life of the character, even if that character doesn’t make devastating mistakes and your life isn’t as perfect as theirs. I don’t think suffering/failure/mistakes are the only way to help the reader relate to a character. I believe that it can also be achieved through a character’s happiness/dreams/achievements/desires as well.

All that seems to matter is that the story is written and shared.

Sidenote: Even though I am of a different opinion, I love her blog and videos! Worth checking out. 🙂


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