Character Arcs | Writing a Growth Arc

Hello, and welcome to post #3 of the Character Arc series!

In this series, we’re exploring different types of character arcs and how to write them. In this post in particular, we’ll be discussing growth arcs.

If you want to catch all the posts in this series, here’s a list of them (I’ll be updating the links here as and when I post them):

What is a Growth Arc?

A growth arc is a type of character arc where the character undergoes a change or learns a lesson over the course of the story. This change may be emotional, intellectual, or physical, but the goal is for the character to become a better or more mature person.

Do I Know Any Characters With a Growth Arc?

Warning: if you’ve not read To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, the following might be a spoiler

A good example of a character with a growth arc is Scout from “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. Throughout the story, Scout learns about racism, prejudice, and empathy through her interactions with people in her community. She begins the story as a young, innocent child and by the end of the story, she has a deeper understanding of the world around her.

How Do I Write a Growth Arc for my Character?

To write a growth arc for your character, you need to identify what your character needs to learn or change in order to grow. Here are a few prompts to help get you started:

  • Have your character learn a lesson through a personal experience or mistake
  • Have your character confront a difficult decision or challenge and grow from the experience
  • Have your character overcome a personal flaw or weakness
  • Have your character encounter new experiences or perspectives that challenge their beliefs
  • Have your character form a relationship or bond with another character that helps them grow

When writing a growth arc, it’s important to consider the character’s motivations, fears, and beliefs. You want to show the character’s growth over time and make it feel believable and meaningful.

I hope this post has been helpful for you if you’ve been struggling with writing characters’ growth arcs. If you liked this post, check out the rest of my posts in this Character Arc series! I’ll be back with post #4 on Fall arcs soon.

Are you writing a growth arc?

Feature image photo by Christina Deravedisian on Unsplash, blog photos by myself and by Corinne Kutz and Photo by Sixteen Miles Out

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