7 Best Ways to Create a Character Motivation | FLAT MAD

February 17, 2021by Roomy Janjua0

Believable character motivations drive most literature’s most well-known characters. Characters, such as real individuals, have wanted, wants, and requirements. They’ve motivations they truly are mindful of and ones that they usually aren’t. All these impacts your choices that they create. Listed below are a couple of tips for producing character motivation:

  • Give each character their particular credible motivation
  • Give characters subconscious and conscious motivations
  • Show how grounds stem from irrational and rational beliefs
  • Develop characters’ motivations with new storyline events
  • Don’t give feelings what they need too readily
  • Allow subtlety when demonstrating what drives your characters
  • Make motivations complex to increase suspense.
best ways to create character motivation
Character Motivation

Give each character their particular credible motivation

People have differing formative adventures, different upbringings, and personalities. All these various factors affect their values and motivations. For instance, in a dream novel where characters move to a quest, an individual may be a money-hungry assassin in it for the cover. Idealism and nobility only are not worth what they hold. They’re practical and calculating, unfeeling. Another at the party, meanwhile, has a restless spirit. They truly are just tagging along for the adventure and can not bear to stay one place too long. What constitutes a character’s motivation credible/believable?

each character their particular credible motivation

  • It makes sense when people hear the character’s backstory: Perhaps the assassin lived on the roads and had to learn to fend for themselves, which hardened them. Maybe the adventurer grew up in a small town but always had a curious mind and yearned to see what lay beyond the next horizon.
  • It’s grounded in effect and cause: People don’t all respond the same to similar situations. Yet, there are certain similarities. A buff jilted at the altar, for instance, would probably find it difficult to trust a new romantic partner. Motivations are believable when we know why folks seek the paths that they do

Character motivations do not necessarily need to be made explicit. In many horror books, part of the mystery and excitement isn’t precisely why a malevolent entity terrorizes its victims. However, there are always at least several characters that show emotional cause and effect within their behavior.

Putting exactly what drives your characters helps readers to know why your story pans out how it does. It adds cohesion — the narrative makes sense. Other characters’ motives are making sense. They ought to be interesting. One way to maintain motivations interesting is to vary how aware characters are of the very own motivations.

Give characters subconscious and conscious motivations

Just like me or you, characters may perhaps not always fully understand their particular behavior. Conscious motivations would be the factors driving us we’re aware of. For instance, in Orwell’s famous satire Animal Farm (1945),” Old Boar summons the creatures together to urge them to revolt. He does so because he’s conscious of this power difference between animals and humans on the farm.

Conscious motivations are crucial because, as subscribers, we enjoy busy characters who take control of their fates and behave. They reveal character psychology. Unconscious stimuli would be the forces and impulses characters don’t always understand. A name could, as an example, Self Sabotage out of non-self-esteem.

This behavior blueprint could stem from abuse sooner in life, such as getting bullied poorly in school. You can show readers different situations (the character’s struggles later in life and the injury variable of being bullied) without explicitly drawing on this link. This is the area where fiction can be successful, as your reader could get a wider view and understanding of your character’s intentions and patterns (and more empathy for them) than the name has.

subconscious and conscious motivations
Subconscious & Conscious Motivations

Show how grounds stem from irrational and rational beliefs

irrational and rational beliefs

The sociologist Max Weber gives this definition of This difference between rational and irrational motivation:

The simple truth is that most men and women follow a combination of rational and irrational motivations. Some times you can chop wood as you want to light a fire or have a barbecue. Sometimes you may chop wood to stay busy and facilitate burnout. The underlying cause may not fit the activity obtained so plainly.
For authentic variety on the throw of characters, individuals’ motivations should lie to a scale of rationality/irrationality.

Some characters may be primarily ridiculous in the reason why they do matters. They might be all spontaneous, unconscious drives.
Others might be hyper-rational, never taking any activity unless the immediate, practical benefits are clear in their mind. The latter type is typical of this detective figure in mystery and crime novels (as an instance, Agatha Christie’s punctual Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot).

Develop characters’ motivations with new storyline events

To keep your characters interesting, let their motivations grow as the story unfolds. As an instance, in Paula Hawkins’ smash hit thriller The Girl on the Train (2015), the protagonist Rachel initially stalks her ex and his new flame out of hurt and poor boundaries due to developing alcoholism. Yet once she notices dangerous entanglement between them and another couple living nearby, her motivation shifts to wanting to uncover the truth about her ex-husband.

When major plot events occur, think about how they might change your character. In Hawkins’ publication, Rachel manages to stop occasionally drinking after discovering unsettling facts, motivated with her attention in solving the mystery she finds out. This motivation shift keeps Rachel interesting. Significant developments that could ignite new character reasons include.

  • New Connections with Additional characters
  • A Surprising loss or Benefit 
  • A Shift in career Course 
  • Mysterious discoveries

Changing characters’ pushes and wants over time make sense of development, which produces feelings to feel real and engaged with their world and circumstances.

new storyline events
New Storyline Event

Don’t give feelings what they need too readily


Be certain your characters’ actions don’t lead in a straight line to getting what they want, even if their motivations are clear, because this will likely make the character arc feel predictable.

Obstacles and complications intrigue us because we become invested in knowing the answer to a burning question (for example,’Will the protagonist and her love interest unite despite their ancestral households [the obstacle]?’)

Victories and achievements are often hard-won. Making the paths to your characters’ goals strewn with setbacks creates special interest as well as an improved sense of truth.

Allow subtlety when demonstrating what drives your characters

It feels showy when characters report their motivations expressly. Albeit this gadget has been utilized viably (from Shakespeare to the conspiring focal character in Netflix’s House of Cards), it could feel stagey, similar to an incredible huge section of telling.

All things considered, show the roots of your characters’ longings and practices through scenes.

Some of the time you may have to have your character state motivations so anyone can hear, yet showing what drives them as a structured plan of recollections, fears, convictions, and continuous encounters will make it simpler for perusers to reach their own inferences about characters’ conduct and why it is critical.


Make Character Motivations Complex to Increase Suspense

Make motivations complex to increase suspense
Making Complex

A basic, single motivation makes the potential for some fascinating scenes and plot advancements.

However a more intricate motivation can make elevated pressure and vulnerability.

For instance, in a recorded or dream novel, a military consultant to the lord could have a basic motivation of steadfastness because of commonality and shared dependence. This is a straightforward motivation. However imagine a scenario where there are extra conditions convoluting his position.

For instance, imagine a scenario in which they are intending to lay attack to a city where he (obscure to the ruler) the consultant has a darling he needs to be careful. An episode of battle between the two realms could make an irreconcilable situation where there is strain between two concurrent held needs and wants.

Give characters numerous motivations as you plan your plot since individuals will in general shuffle various longings that push and pull them along various approaches. Characters, such as ourselves, now and again need to settle on extreme choices that take the story in new, emotional headings.

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Roomy Janjua

Roomy Janjua is a Digital Marketing expert and founder of FLATMAD Company. He helped out many businesses in their digital marketing success. You can contact Roomy Janjua by using the FLATMAD contact us process.

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