What is the best way to make readers emotionally attached to characters?

What would be the best way to make a reader become emotionally attached to a character? To make them actually care what would happen to them?


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Talking about their back stories, making them funny


Add depth to them. Add character. Develop them fully. Make them feel as if they’re someone your reader knows.



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Thanks for the help!

Something i think’s very important is to give your character flaws. Nobody in real life’s perfect, and if i’m reading a story with characters who are, i feel very unattached to them.


Thanks! :smile:

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My take on this

By showing, not telling.

You want to show their actions, not talk about them as a narrator. They need to discover the character’s traits themselves rather than have them being told.

For example saying Samantha is adventurous because she does this or that, bla bla bla is boring but showing that she’s a mountain climber, travels to jungles, looks for idols, and does all sorts of crazy stunts shows that she is adventurous.

Same for a smart character-rather than saying they’re super smart, just show that they gets good grades by doing all of their homework on time, and other school approved actions.

So, yeah, too much exposition is never a good thing.

You want to aim to show your readers the character’s personality, not spill everything about the character to them in a small text box.

Readers want to get to know the character better and go on their journey : )

So, to sum it all up, when it comes to talking about the personality of characters rather than showing their actions & emotions, you want to avoid doing that. I guess a little explanation is good, just not TOO much.

Thank you for reading ^^


of course <3

Thank you so much for the help!

For one of my stories I get a lot of feedback that people are really attached to the characters. Part of me thinks it’s because I let them customise the four main characters. So that could be it? I also give them a bit of a stereotype to mess around with, which I say before they customise. Like there’s the scary and intimidating chick, so I say “make her look scary and intimidating” and there’s the mum-friend, so I say “make her look responsible and hard working” and I think that’s what gives my readers a connection to them


Depth, their ugly sides, their good sides, the motives behind why they do what they do.

One of my absolute favorite characters in a story that LEGITIMATELY (is2g) made me cry with her scenes was Maritza in He Can’t Tame Me. She’s supposed to be the blonde “bitchy” girl (except she’s gay and fab and hot af imo lmao), but also a POC and idk I can relate to her SO much because of her inner self-loathing when it comes to her culture and WHY. Because it’s the kind of resentment I have/had to deal with, and the way Meila writes her is gripping/tugs at my heartstrings. (plus who doesn’t like a gay aggressive barbie of high school?)

@meila idk if you’re on the forums muchbut thank you so much for creating her like fekanfwianfioweaofio

She’s an excellent example of not a plain Mary Sue but at the same time, so relatable and more than just having a bitchy facade.


awww thank you so much <33

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Make them somebody they can relate to. Somebody who has an ugly side but has a brighter side. Add their backstory and make it as deep as possible.

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OHH SHIT YOU REALLY ARE ON THE FORUMS. The goddess actually noticed me, brb gonna go fangirl.

But really, Maritza is probably my favorite character.

As for the topic relating, I’m all for morally gray characters too. I don’t like Mary Sues that are overly insecure, but also some who are too perfect.

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Make them feel like real people. To add to the points people are already make them, I say to give them a backstory, insecurities, and flaws that people can relate to. The bookish girl whose parents died or just don’t care and whose only flaw is that she’s clumsy but in a cute way isn’t as easy to connect with as the painfully shy teenager who’s worried she’ll never live up to expectations (either her own, those of others, or both) and whose current relationship with her parents or other caregivers is tense or distant. They both sound similar, but the first character doesn’t feel like a real person, and has traits only some people can relate to. The second one is more fleshed-out, and with the things going on in her life, most people can connect to at least one part of it.

You can also just make a character interesting. If a reader can’t like or empathize with a character, but the traits that make that impossible are also important to the story, give your character quirks or a lack of predictability that urges the reader to continue anyway, if only to see what your character will do next.