humor, Writing

When to kill a character

Writing When to kill a character

Not every novel is going to have a death in it. But when do you kill a character in your writing? Authors kill characters for reasons, man, lots of reasons.

Here are some:


They are getting on your nerves

Turns out, that character is quite annoying. So they much die a painful excruciating death or fall down the stairs.

They made an emotional connection with your protagonist

And your protagonist can’t be happy. They must suffer relentlessly. Bwahahahaha

When your protagonist needs some motivation

Your protagonist should be saving the world but, sadly, they have no motivation to do so. And so you kill their best friend or lover and now they have the motivation to right that wrong!

You haven’t killed anyone yet

Someone Must die. Someone always dies. And so you randomly picked a character who wasn’t all that necessary but your protagonist liked them.

You’re writing a tragedy

So everyone must die! Tragically.

You don’t like happy-ever-afters

So when your character becomes happy and content that is time to kill someone. Stir things up a bit.

You like happy-ever-afters

And that character Deserved to die.

You’re bored

And feel like your novel needs a little tragedy to mix it up.

When it suits the plot

That dude was always going to die. Might as well be now.

You’re stuck on the plot

Die character! That’ll get the creativity going and the plot flowing.

You haven’t had any caffeine yet

So someone has to die. Best make it in the book.

You are suffering

So they must also suffer. Misery loves company. Even if it is the story that lives in your head. Thier pain will make you feel less stressed. I swear.

That character reminds you of someone you don’t like

So it is cathartic to kill them off. Boss pissed you off? Write them in your book and then murder them. While laughing manically.


So there you go. If you ever wanted to know why writers kill characters, these are some of the completely true not fabricated reasons.

Some other awesome writing tips:

9 Ways to boost creativity

Writing: How to get out of a stuck scene

Writing: What pets to put into your fantasy


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