Character Flaws

(home > characters > flaws)

Nobody is perfect and neither are your characters. Our flaws make us human and flaws make your characters more human and more real. Author Stephen J. Cannell says, "The flaws in a character are always more interesting than the strengths."

Many writers gather much of their material from their own lives (sometimes without realizing it). You already know some character flaws from living your life. You know your own weaknesses and you know the flaws of your friends and family members. You have seen people overcome their flaws and seen them fail. This life knowledge can be applied, adapted and modified for use in fiction. It can also be helpful to read up on personality flaws for inspiration and to get a deeper understanding of characterization.

A very basic 3-step look at character flaw arc in a story is this:
  1. Determine your character's flaw or flaws
  2. Put your character into situations where these flaws will be exacerbated and stressed.
  3. Figure out how your character is able to overcome their flaws to better themselves or save the day.
Here are some resources to help get you started.

Character Flaws Resources