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The mad science laboratory
of a screenwriter & consultant



Thursday

Female Character Flowchart


I've just been sent this Female Character Flowchart and, while I'm not sure how much practical value it has to your writing, it is funny and should serve as a constant reminder to those who may need one that clichéd stock character types – male or female – will count against you every time.

Write your own unique real people as they struggle in difficult or outrageous circumstances. If you're stuck on this, populate your stories with people you know in real life. You don't have to tell them. In fact it may be better that you don't.

Better yet draw on your own character – your own hopes and fears, values and idiosyncrasies. Each one of us is an unlimited mine of realistic material. Whatever your preferred process – avoid (or transcend) the clichés.

That reminds me – if you have a spare month to kill, or otherwise have a lot of urgent procrastinating to get through, there are few better places for a writer to waste time than here:

TV Tropes 
This wiki is a catalog of the tricks of the trade for writing fiction. 
Tropes are devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members' minds and expectations. On the whole, tropes are not clichés. The word clichéd means "stereotyped and trite." In other words, dull and uninteresting. We are not looking for dull and uninteresting entries. We are here to recognize tropes and play with them, not to make fun of them. 
The wiki is called "TV Tropes" because TV is where we started. Over the course of a few years, our scope has crept out to include other media. Tropes transcend television. They reflect life. Since a lot of art, especially the popular arts, does its best to reflect life, tropes are likely to show up everywhere.

If you ever escape from its clutches – happy writing.