Ways to Create Character Sympathy

Whether it be to make a villain more like-able or to make us love our protagonist, we need to put one of these traits in our characters to make the reader attached to them and the plot. The story won’t feel the same if you don’t feel attached to the main character. To love the characters we have to feel empathy for them and here are some sure ways to do this.

Give them a valued trait

Integrity, honesty, LOYALTY, respectfulness, responsibility, humility, compassion, fairness, forgiveness, authenticity, courageousness, generosity, perseverance, politeness, kindness, lovingness, optimism, reliability. Just some examples 😉

Treated unfairly

Our hearts always break a little when we see a puppy being left behind. Our favorite character being bullied automatically makes us start rooting for them, to get out or overcome their situation.

Troubled past

This one works like the one before. Pulls at our heart strings.

Changing for the better

Character growth is personally one of my favorite things to see in a character. An example of this could be going from shy, quiet to confident, self-assured or mean, bully to defender, protector.

Inner struggle

It makes us soft knowing the characters want to be their best even during bad circumstances. If they’re being forced to do something wrong but they don’t feel comfortable doing it.

Forced into danger

“The chosen one” is a cliché because it works. We always root for the character that has to sacrifice, fight, protect because they were chosen unwillingly.


Such a rare human trait, it is so hard to find on your everyday life that I think we instantly become attached to our hero who thinks about everyone except themselves.

Quirks and Flaws

Clumsy, lip biting, fidgeting, lazy, picky eater, liar, arrogant, forgets names, accent, messy eater, doesn’t like to be touched, no tact, reader, always touching hair, eyes are different colors. The options are endless!

To many readers, the characters are what pulls them to a story and keeps them there. Getting attached to a character, suffering and celebrating with them, it’s what is all about. I will forever have a crush on Percy Jackson, want to be best friends with Celeana Sardothien and spend the day at the burrow with Harry, Hermione, and the Weasleys. So when writing your book really think out your characters and add at least one of these traits. You can add more than one just make sure you don’t cross over to cliché.


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