By Annette Rey
Often I tell writers to get information, insight, and inspiration about their characters from “real life” sources instead of just relying on their own imagination.
Here is a good site to check out.
“People inspire you or they drain you. Pick them wisely.” ~Hans F. Hansen
This article plants a lot of ideas you can incorporate into and between characters in a scene and because these are based on real-life people your writing will ring with truth. Your reader will recognize certain behaviors in your characters that they have to deal with in their daily lives. This can lead to your reader clinging onto to your pages and wanting to know what happens next.
Your protagonist may even fight depressive moods and spewing his toxicity on others. I think of the character Doc Martin who is gruff and brusque and has no social skills. Except for his genius ability as a doctor, patients are not attracted to him as a person. Though I wouldn’t call him a toxic character, he does cause discomfort in others.
You can create your own blend of symptoms in your characters and make them as offensive as you like. The more complicated your people are the more you can work all sorts of scenes around them. Then throw in a catalyst, another character perhaps with opposite behaviors, and watch the ink fly. Once you get that inspiring idea there will be no stopping your creative writing.
The article mentions NPD (narcissistic personality disorder). Any investigation of this condition will give you reams of fodder for your files. Even Wikipedia is a good place to mine for material to add to your characters.
As life imitates art, and vice versa, study sites like these to start your writing juices flowing.
Thrill your readers!