How to show character development

Showing Character development is fundamental to any type of story you write. It’s how the readers relate to your characters and what makes them root for that character. good character development can make a villain deserve redemption, a hero it’s pride and a wallflower speak louder than any other character.

So here is what I think is Character development and how you can show it the best:

Ways to show their growth


Personal, external or emotional conflicts are what show your character defelopment.

Weaknesses/ Flaws:
Giving your character something they lack, or that is keeping them from reaching their full potatial/ their goal is a great way to have them struggle and show development because they need to grow to get to the point they want to go.

How they react to each character they see will also show development. They can respond to a rude person in one way, then another encounter after growing, they may respond completely differently.

Situations/ Events:

a common thing to do is put your character into a similar situation after a while and how that character changed, is how you show the development. Everything in between has been helping that character change. every encounter, good and bad, could have changed that character’s perspective and an arrogant snob could suddenly show compassion and stand up for those in need of aid instead of turning a blind eye.

it’s how you make your character human and in my eyes, the best way to show character development is by giving them a lot of negative traits. naive, wary, self-centered, etc. give your character something that you don’t like about them …


give them something to aim for; skill, a reward, or event that they want to reach so badly, but lack something to fully be happy.

Suddenly even though they are in the same situation as before, they will react differently.


Personally, I think a good way to analyze is looking at your character as if they are human beings.

Everyone has struggles, everyone has happy moments, and each of those moments changes us in a way for the future. They teach us something that we can apply in the future. your characters, especially in rp’s, are the same. As they go along, they learn, and that learning, adjusting, and reflecting that we do, happen to characters with development as well.

Personal example

An example I have is my own characters from Westeria: Charlia & Bryn:
So for those who don’t know them, I’ll add a little bit of an explanation on who they are as well. but the RP is about a land divided into Magic (Lakota) and Technology (selenium) who are at war with each other.

Charlia is a young lynx creature of a species that is known as the guardians of the land. She was taught this from a young age and has lived her life thinking she’s going to be/ is a guardian. It wasn’t until the war happened and she started losing her land that she realized that she wasn’t a guardian yet, she didn’t know how to protect the land.

So she decides to join the army of the mages because she thinks that’s how she is able to protect her land. However, she can’t kill and meet others of her kind who only show her more and more how unprepared and unskilled she is.

So she started off proud and strong but now hit the point where she realizes she didn’t live up to the expectations she had of herself and what she would hope she could be as a replacement to her parents.

What she does from that point out is what is going to be the development:
is she going to be working towards being worthy of calling herself a guardian, is she going to be made, blame everyone else, and still claim to be a guardian just one without proper training or is she going to give up and abandon her land and leave the troops?

Those choices will come naturally with future events.

Bryn was born a mage, but while training he lost control of his magic and almost got killed. He was saved by someone from the technology side (Damien). AKA he was saved by the thing they were taught to hate while his own magic nearly killed him.

I used this dialogue to show how Bryn’s look at technology and Seleniums had changed over the years.

So when he’s going to be encountering his own kind, it’s going to be crucial what his experiences on both sides were to show where his loyalty will be.

Spooky Sherry's 2 ways to write character development

Lastly, @SpookySherry made a threat about how to write character development in two specific ways of narrating so if you want to learn even more be sure to check it out!.

How To: Writing Character Development

@RPers anything you like to add or would like to know more about regarding character development?


thread exists Kale's Guide to Well-Developed Characters

You may want to read both threads first, 'cause they are different. One is showing how to create developed characters while the other is talking about developing characters through writing.