How To Capture Character Emotions


The connection between the reader and your story’s main character has to be both believable and empathetic.

Good characterisation can really make a story — especially in “The People’s Friend”.

If characters’ emotions are dull or far-fetched, your reader will tune out. That’s definitely something you don’t want!

Some writers are hesitant when it comes to capturing emotions on the page. Or they simply don’t know where to begin.

We can help!

How do you capture characters who are happy, angry or sad? For us, it’s about writing from the heart.

We’ve all been there — whether it’s falling in love, or feeling disappointed when something doesn’t turn out as we had hoped. Reflecting those feelings in your characters, and you’ll soon see them develop on the page.

Channelling hopes and dreams

I don’t know about you, but when I hear a favourite song on the radio, I have a tendency to think back to where I was or what I was doing when I first heard it.

Listening to certain tunes can often evoke feelings of nostalgia. It’s the same when it comes to bringing your characters’ emotions to life. Writing an convincing, empathetic scene will often be dependent on your own experiences on the matter.

You might say, “But I haven’t experienced what my characters are going through.” That’s perfectly fine, as you simply imagine how you would feel if you were that character facing an imminent wedding proposal or job loss.

We all have hopes and dreams (and fears), and it’s a matter of channelling our imaginations into our characters.

I think the most believable characters are the ones who have a little piece of the writer in them.

Characters’ actions are important in story writing, but equally so is how they think and feel.

You are writing about people for people. That’s the “Friend” way.

For more writing tips from “The People’s Friend”, click here.

Alan Spink

Alan is a member of the “Friend” Fiction Team. He enjoys working closely with writers and being part of the creative process, which sees storytelling ideas come to fruition. A keen reader, he also writes fiction and enjoys watching football and movies in his spare time. His one tip to new writers is “write from your imagination”.