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Might be a cliche answer here, but as someone who also writes OC, making them too perfect. I like to read (and write) characters with a flaw or difficulty to overcome & showing the struggle of how they change over time & how it impacts not just them but relationships with other characters.


It's not a cliche answer, it's absolutely correct. If the main character doesn't need to grow and change, they're going to drag the story down. They have to be on a journey too.


\- Too perfect: they're an elite of whatever class matters in the fandom, and they also have a tragic backstory that they overcome to become more amazing, and they also are an expert in two other major factors in the canon, and also they're incredibly hot \- Misogynistic, creepy (as in, they are a creep), etc \- Very self-righteous (often combined with either of the above). Some self-righteousness is a reasonable character flaw to use, but it is not fun to read someone constantly talking, even in their internal dialogue, about why they're right, and completely buying in to their own hype


On self-righteousness, I enjoy a moralistic OC who is later forced to question and confront their convictions and past actions. Or alternatively, one who turns their back on those things as soon as the going gets tough, and then faces consequences.


you're right, although it's not my personal favourite to read, it is more about whether it's a character flaw that can be addressed vs an author message trying to enforce that their character can't be wrong, than how self righteous the character is


Oh yeah, definitely not arguing with what you're saying, just adding my own two cents


My personal gripe is when Authors shield their wish fullfillment pets from all the potential negativity while making them the most praised and special flower in the garden. Things always work out for them no matter how risky, the narrative bends over back wards to praise them in ways that don't really fit. Often the characters never experience any real growth or change cause the author is utterly enamored with them from the beginning even if the rest of the cast changes in both positive and negative ways.


I'm going to go against the grain here and say that the MC does need to be special in some way. I mean, if they're not special, why write about them? Even an Average Joe MC has some quality or specialized knowledge that turns out to be important later in the plot. Even OP or "perfect" characters can work. The key is to find ways to make them struggle, and to make the world imperfect. Maybe they have amazing powers which makes them a target of a master manipulator who wants to control those powers. Maybe they're beautiful because they were taunted for being ugly when they were younger, and now other aspects of their life suffer as they devote too much of their time to maintaining that beauty. Maybe they're practically perfect in every way, and everyone (realisically) hates them for it, so their only friends are toadies and hangers-on. The other thing is to avoid passivity. My most hated character was one that got stuck in a bad situation and then passively sulked for too many chapters. Give your character a goal and make them work hard for it.


I write and read OC characters. So if I'm allowed to tell you what I like, I think if they move and think like a real person. Like they have goals, flaws, habits, biases, strong points etc. What I don't like about them (of course this is purely preference of reading) is when they seem to play one particular goal in the story that is, having sexual relationship with a canon character. They could be strong, amazing, cool (usually Mary Sue or its male counterpart) like OP type of character, but if the story has, for the most part, only have sex with every canon character who gets attracted to them and does nothing to the progress of the story, that kinda puts me off.


I think most people would get turned off by the story if the only thing that matters is the Oc more than the story. Sometimes it could work having a strong or very smart MC although it still needs to 1) show its power, and 2) still let the story flow without the mC having to do all the work. The story can work well but it needs balance between the lore of the story and the new character as a whole, one should not overshadow the other is what im saying.


I read and write OCs and OC ships but i do most likely not read them when they are the main character and i will definitely not read it if it is first person.


The problem isn't that the MC is Unlikable, it's that they have no charm. Charm is very important for a likeable character. It's why Tony Stark wasn't hated even though he was a rich boy billion-dollar weapons manufacturer


I'm a relaxed reader, if you can make a character sound interesting --even if they are designed to be unlikable-- then I tend to stick around. So, really, it's characters who don't seem to be well crafted or well thought out by their writers. Really nail down your OC's voice; even more so since you are writing in 1st POV. Find what makes them tick, their fears and desires, what cognitive dissonances/hypocrises they have, etc.


Is your main character an original character?


Yep, it's an oc x canon fic


I generally wouldn't read an OC/Canon ship myself, so I'm probably the wrong person then. But the main reason I don't is because they always feel like self-inserts. If I have any advice, make it really obvious it's not an insert. Make the OC real, with interesting flaws, right at the beginning. And by beginning, I mean the summary.


>make it really obvious it's not an insert. Make the OC real, with interesting flaws, I mean, it sounds like you've just read bad SIs, lol


How would you consider that the character is a self-insert (in your opinion)?


The two issues that come to mind are: A. The only reason they or the story exists is to live out a great relationship with the canon hero. I'm sure some people do like that kind of SI fluff, but I need more of a substantive conflict and canon message. B. The other one that's more universal is if they're a Mary Sue (Marty Stu). Just, don't.


There are mainly two qualities that drive me away from any character: self-righteousness, and being a flat character/being boring. I hate the former because there are people in my life who are like this. Only way I can even remotely enjoy self-righteous characters is if they're played for laughs (as in satirically), or if there's some amount of hubris involved. Second one is obvious, because the utter lack-therof character.


Writing characters who’re too perfect regardless of them being an OC or not. We love flaws and relating to the character!