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Free Character Sketch Essays

Get inside your character's head

A character sketch is a quick rendering of a character, and writing a sketch is about asking and answering questions. In order to write a character sketch, you must ask yourself questions about your character. Only you, as the author, can answer these questions. Although there is no end to the types of questions you can ask, our manuscript editors recommend the following prompts to get you thinking about who your character is so that you can write a clear and concise sketch.

Who is your character physically?

Physical characteristics are the first things we notice when we meet someone. Therefore, this is a good starting point when writing a character sketch. Is your character a woman or a man? Is he or she tall or short? Is your character bald? How old is your character? Does he or she have a disability?

Authors, eager to explore the in-depth psychology of their written subjects, might discount these details as unimportant and base. But it is often these very details that lead to conflict or are the means through which we explore a character's psychology. As an example of this, we recommend reading Flannery O'Connor's Good Country People; in this short story, the physical details of the main character are representations of her internal state. Without a vivid description of this character's physicality, a critical dimension of the plot would be lost and the central conflict would be nonexistent. Answering questions about your character's physicality is the first step in creating a fully realized character.

What is your character doing?

This is the next question to ask because it brings into account other aspects of story writing such as setting and time. The answer to this question will also affect other aspects of your sketch, such as what your character is wearing or how he or she is feeling. Is your character walking down the street? Is he or she sitting in a park? Is your character working on a boat? Asking what your character is doing will not only help you understand your character, but also his or her relationship to the setting in your story.

Authors may be tempted to gloss over this part of characterization. When asked what his or her character is doing, an author might give a cursory answer; he or she may answer that the subject is at the movies, for example. But consider all that there is to do at a movie theatre: Is the character waiting in line for tickets or at the concession stand? Is he or she waiting to talk to the manager? Perhaps the character is sitting impatiently waiting for the movie to begin. Getting as specific as you can when answering this question will not only help you define your character, but will also help to define the other elements of fiction.

What is your character feeling?

This is probably one of the more complex questions you can ask about your character. Is your character angry? Is he or she happy, sad, tired, or depressed? Does your character love something or someone? Asking questions about your character's emotional life might evolve into the production of a character history. While this may be tempting, you have to focus on what your subject is feeling within the context of the story you are writing. Although the answers to these questions are important, they are rarely explicitly stated in the story.

Authors may be tempted to start with the emotional or psychological state of their characters and they may even explicitly state them. This can lead to one of the cardinal sins of fiction writing: telling instead of showing. Implicitly showing how your character is feeling by his or her interactions with other characters or the setting is infinitely more interesting to read than explicitly stating whether your character is happy, sad, elated, joyful, or miserable.

Building off your character sketch

A sketch is a starting point. In the visual arts, artists carry around sketch pads to practice and develop the fundamental skills of their craft with the aim of producing paintings that seem to jump off the canvas, or sculptures that seem to move in just the right light. The same is true for authors who use character sketches. Writers use this tool to develop and rehearse one of the fundamental skills of their craft—characterization. However, the final goal is not to have a notepad full of character sketches. An author should get to know his or her character through this practice.

While not everything that an author writes in a character sketch must be included in the novel, the author should develop an in-depth and all-encompassing knowledge of every facet of the character's personality in order to create a consistent and engaging persona.

The ultimate goal of a writer is to take these character sketches and use them to craft a wonderfully engrossing, character-driven work of fiction. If you want an objective set of eyes to look at your manuscript, try our manuscript critique editors.

Image source: Wilfred Iven/Stocksnap.io

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 Back to Advice and Articles

“Although many people consider the character of Darth Vader from “Star Wars” a villain, I have got some arguments that prove his alter-ego, Anakin Skywalker, had all reasons to turn to the dark side. He remained more humanistic than many other characters of the saga.”

That is how a student can guess how to write a character analysis essay. The most important part is choosing the character a writer likes. Unless your teacher assigns a specific, boring topic like the characters of Shakespeare’s (common, that is a chestnut), try to come up with a unique idea based on the favorite story. Read the article to learn how to write a character analysis essay step by step!

If you are searching for the effective help with character analysis paper in the real-time regime, the best, time-checked option is to place an order with an expert writing service.

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What is a Character Analysis Essay?

“What is a character analysis essay?” That is a good question in case a student faces this type of homework assignment for the 1st time. It is a separate type of academic assignment, usually assigned to the Literature class, which contains a detailed description of the specific character’s appearance, traits, actions, plot development, and other features.

Writing a character analysis might be fun if a student has a right to choose the topic. It is not necessary to discuss only fiction characters – think about taking a person from the real world.

How to Write a Character Analysis Essay: Student’s Mini-Guide

Before we explore how to write a character analysis essay step by step, read a useful advice from an industry expert.

A word from Expert:

“The primary thing to realize if a student wants to learn how to write a character analysis essay is the fact this process involves an in-depth observation of the recommended reading materials along with the intensive research and attention to details that matter. An interview with an expert might give a lot of details too. Reveal the chosen character trough dialogues, narrative, and plot. Remember: distinguished writers develop characters with various facets to focus paper on these complexities.”

Anthony Salvatore, a manager and expert writer at JustBuyEssay

Character Analysis Essay Outline

A character analysis essay outline is a must-have action plan to implement if you wish to succeed in your writing.

  1. Introduction: Like any other academic papers, start a character essay with an introduction. The introduction must hold together the entire essay. After writing an interesting hook to grab the reader's attention, move to the thesis statement and jump to the body paragraphs.
  2. Body part. Subdivide the next part of the character essay into several different ideas. A student will have to support each of the objective and subjective judgments with the help of valuable evidence collected from the relevant, up-to-date, trustworthy sources. It is up to the writer to decide which sources to cite and reference in his essay:
  • Textbooks
  • Academic journals
  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Scholarly articles
  • Documentaries & films
  • Websites
  • Other
  1. Conclusion: Shape a final character thesis statement. Do not copy-paste the thesis sentence from the interaction to avoid self-plagiarism. List the main points discussed in the body section in the shape of a summary to remind the reader what you were talking about and why the specific characters were chosen. End up with a concluding sentence that will leave a strong impression on the reading audience.
This table will help to understand the character analysis essay outline.

CHARACTER ANALYSIS ESSAY OUTLINE (5-PARAGRAPH PAPER)

Introduction

  • Decide on hook
  • Orientate the target audience
  • Define the character
  • Outline scope
  • Come up with thesis statement

Body Paragraphs

Topic sentence #1

Supporting evidence from primary sources

Conclusion #1

Topic sentence #2

Supporting evidence from primary sources

Conclusion #2

Topic sentence #3

Supporting evidence from primary sources

Conclusion #3

Conclusion

  • Sum up main ideas from each body paragraph
  • Reword thesis statement
  • Involve one more hook to conclude a character analysis

INVEST IN YOUR SUCCESS NOW

Character Analysis Essay Introduction

How could a character analysis essay introduction look like? If you describe the characters from “Batman,” for example, start with a hook like “Bruce Wayne was not a protagonist of the story; this character led to the deaths of many people by refusing to invest his money into charity, environmental issues, and more.” It is an intriguing, non-standard hook. Most people tend to view Batman as a positive character. It is a good idea to show another side. Focus on the fact because his rich alter-ego did not support some of the city’s enthusiast like the character of Pamela Lillian Isley who wanted to support the environment, many of those people end up mutating and turning into negative characters. Stress these people had a chance if not Batman.

How to Write a Conclusion for a Character Analysis Essay?

In the body paragraphs of a character analysis, a student has to discuss why he/she believes Batman is not an entirely positive figure as many kids believe by listing the reasons. You may come up with the argumentative points.

  1. Batman never shared his money with everyone who needed it
  2. The character felt no sorry for the deaths of villains who used to be human beings before
  3. A popular character was not even a real superhero as he did not have any supernatural powers

The summary of these points will work for the character analysis essay conclusion; in the body, a writer should also add evidence like in-text citations. Recall some episodes from the movie or comics to support your view.

As for the conclusion, there is no need to write the evidence again: name the 3 arguments from the body paragraphs and restate the thesis. To leave an impression, provide some shocking facts about the characters. It could be: “The next time we will see another Batman-related movie, he might start murdering people.”

There is nothing complicated about writing a character analysis!

Have a look at a brilliant structure of the character analysis essay example; this one is based on “The Great Gatsby” novel. An interesting idea would be to compare & contrast characters or display how one views another.

Main argument/thesis: Tom Buchanan is what the main character Nick calls a scathing reflection of the old money society as unsafe and full of fears even though he seems to have a significant privilege in the shape of beautiful wife and wealth.

Body paragraph #1: The trappings of Buchanan life stress his privilege and unsafety. Supporting evidence:

  • Lots of polo horses
  • Incredible richness
  • Year spent overseas in France (luxury)
  • Fancy house
  • Gorgeous wife

Body paragraph #2: Tom’s behavior and mood continuously point to his insecurity. Supporting facts:

  • Prefers to cheat on his wife with lower-class females as they are easier to dominate
  • Remains rather sad that his days of glory in soccer are gone
  • Believes the elite is near to be swept off the map

Body paragraph #3:

His ongoing policing of the actions of others points to the fact the man wishes to reinforce social separation by status. Supporting arguments:

  • Contributing money to the Gatsby’s criminal affairs thinking he is a bootlegger
  • Mocking the pink suit
  • Purchasing 10 dogs by throwing cash at Myrtle

Conclusion: Tom Buchanan’s privilege just makes him feel above other people and believe he is a victim whose social status is under the threat of being usurped. Like Nick mentioned, this man is a scathing image of old money royalty.

That was a clear, simple method to understand how to write a character analysis essay. If you need more information or exclusive help with academic character analysis writing assignments, just one group of people can help, and they are available online 24/7!

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