Story/Character Arc Writing Resources
How to Write a Compelling Character Arc
Character Development and Finding Nemo
On Simple Story Arcs
9 Steps to Building a Strong Plot
3 Questions to Help Solve Plot Problems
~Grand List of Writing Resources~
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heyy sorry if uve done this before but can u do like a “how to write character deaths” but not just their deaths but how the death effects the characters/plot, emotional impact, or even funeral/wake/celebration of life arrangements?
Sorry for the wait, it's just a lot to work through and it's hard to do this in just one post, because the death of a character can impact the story in a lot of different ways and funeral arrangements differ so much, depending on so many factors, like faith, tradition, money and the will of the deceased. It also depends on the laws of the country, because some types of funerals are not allowed everywhere. So I tried to give you at least a short overview on how you can write it and types of funerals.
How to write character deaths
How to write it
it depends on the importance of the character and the intention behind their death
some deaths are expected, some are sudden
if you want the death to be sad, establish a relationship for the reader with that character
show them as a real person with layers and emotions and complex relationships and goals and dreams
show what they wanted to accomplish and who they could've been, but now can't
if you want the death to be shocking, you can do the same, but focus on the way they die
make it sudden, make it gruesome, maybe write a scene where the reader was sure they would die and then they didn't, giving them a false sense of safety and then they still die a little while later
the impact for the remaining characters of course also depends on the dead character's importance to them
this can mean their relationship (family, friends, romantic partners), but also if the dead character was supposed to help the remaining characters with their goal and now can't fulfill their role
it depends on the bereaved's way of handling situations like this, how they will react
it can go from ignoring the loss, trying to now live their life to the fullest, to a deep spiral of depression or violent anger
Types of funeral arrangements
faith-based traditional funerals (depending on religion and custom)
>Ex. Islamic: immediate burial, bathing, reciting funeral prayers, body facing Mekka, etc.; Jewish: immediate burial, bathing, no cremation, keeping watch, etc.; Christian: emphasis on resurrection, funeral procession to the church, etc. - (different for each denomination)
direct burial (without religious aspects)
cremation (ashes kept in urns, burial at sea, buried under grass in unmarked grave, etc.)
I'm very lucky to not have been to a funeral before, so I'm no expert for arrangements.
Hope this helps!
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random occupations ♡ here is a list of jobs to help inspire !!
art gallery owner
celebrity’s personal assistant
cruise ship singer
food truck owner
fortune teller / tarot card reader
funeral home owner
game show host
las vegas show girl
museum archivist / conservator / curator
music video dance choreographer
olympic ice skater
smoothie / juice bar owner
video game developer
yoga studio owner
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Soooooooo im a major fic hopper ;-; i soon as i have an idea i make a new book find a cover add tags write an outline etc etc but then i get bored within the next 2 days. whats more annoying is the fact i really wanna finish and publish a full book. Any tips :(
Love Planning, Struggling with Writing
To some degree, this is an issue of making the choice to stick with something. You have control of yourself and what you do, and you have the ability to focus on one thing if that's what you choose to do. When I'm trying to focus on one WIP and I get a new, unrelated idea, what I like to do is write it down in a pretty notebook. (I also jot it down in a document on my laptop so I have it in two places.) Once the idea is down, I push it out of my mind and focus my attention back on my WIP.
Also, in your case, I would strongly recommend against choosing a cover at the beginning, before the story is even written. Seasoned writers who know they can finish a story from an outline can get away with that, but if you're struggling to finish first drafts, this isn't something you should be doing. It's the equivalent of eating dessert first. It's super fun and delicious, but most people don't want to eat pan-seared halibut, steamed broccoli, and wild rice ten minutes after consuming a giant slab of four-layer Black Forest gateau. All it does is spoil your appetite, and choosing a cover before the story is written can do the same thing. It can spoil your motivation to actually write the story because having a cover makes your mind feel like the story is done.
Outside of that, you may also want to do some trouble shooting. Review the relevant posts on my Plot & Story Structure post master list to make sure your outlines are on the right track. You might also take a spin through my Motivation post master list to look at other motivation spoilers and find ways to fix them.
I hope that helps! ♥
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Write a piece that includes a pyramid scheme
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hey writers! OneLook Thesaurus lets you find that word you can’t think of but can describe! go check it out!
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Narrative Botox: Filler Words and Phrases to Look Out For
If you’re planning on publishing traditionally, chances are you keep a sharp eye on your word count. Literary agents and publishing houses are on the hunt for the best quality stories that they can print for the cheapest price (using the least paper and ink), so you have a higher chance of gaining representation if you can crank your novel out in the least words possible.
However, filler words and phrases aren’t only the enemies of aspiring traditional authors; every writer—fanfic, novelist, journalist, you name it!—should try to eliminate filler from their stories to assure more concise and high-quality writing. Oftentimes, filler contributes nothing but clutter, and without it, your narrative can flow smoother and in a more sophisticated manner.
But how do you know what’s filler and what’s not? Here are some tips on how to Ctrl+F and kick this narrative botox to the curb!
I compiled these lists with the help of Infusionmedia, BDR Publishing, and ResetEra !
A writer’s worst enemy, and the bane of my manuscripts’ existences. Eliminating all the ‘just’s can cut down your word count by hundreds.
2. “That” as a conjunction
It’s an unnecessary addition to a sentence, which will be more streamlined without it.
Example: “He said that he wouldn’t do it again.”
Revised: “He said he wouldn’t do it again.”
3. “Now” as an adverb
“Now” is essential if you’re talking about the past and present, but when you’re using it to draw attention to a particular statement or point.
Example: “Now, I didn’t think it’d get so out of hand.”
Revised: “I didn’t think it’d get so out of hand.”
4. Redundant adverbs
These adverbs serve no purpose because the verbs they’re describing already imply the way the action is performed.
5. “Telling” words
These words are redundant, especially when using first person, because in describing an event, we can already assume that the characters are experiencing it.
6. “Clarifying” words used to portray definiteness or indefiniteness
Although these are meant to help out the readers get their bearings on a situation, all they do is come across as wishy-washy! Be concise and sure of yourself!
1.“Let out (vocal noise)”
Use the verb instead!
Example: “He let out a sigh.”
Revised: “He sighed.”
2. Using passive voice
Passive voice inflates your word count by including various “to be” verbs into the prose. Passive voice involves actions happening to a subject rather than the subject performing an action, and as a result isn’t as riveting to the reader as active voice; even if it wasn’t a matter of word count, you’d still want to get rid of it anyway!
Still don’t know what I’m talking about? Check out this article from Grammarly.
Example: “The boy was bitten by the dog on his arm.”
Revised: “The dog bit the boy on his arm.”
3. Describing the wrong noun
Many writers will be as specific as possible about what “thing” is affected by the event they’re describing, when it’s much simpler to take a step back and write about something more general.
Example: “The level of water rose.”
Revised: “The water rose.”
4. Phrasal verbs
Phrasal verbs are the combination of two or three words from different grammatical categories—a verb and an adverb or a preposition—to form a single action. Usually, these phrasal verbs can be replaced by a single-word verb.
“Ask for” can be replaced with “request”
“Bring down” can be replaced with “reduce”
“Come across” can be replaced with “find”
5. Clarifying phrases
Same reason as clarifying words. Get to the point!
In a sense
6. Remember your contractions!
Even if your story takes place in olden times, I can guarantee that if you never use any contractions ever, your story’s gonna be a clunky mess. But sometimes you’re in the moment, consumed by the poetic power of the muses, and forget that this isn’t a soap opera; so make sure you check that you’ve been using your contractions!
It is, it was, it would, she is, would not, should not, is not, does not etc.
7. Inflated phrases
These phrases can be replaced with more concise words.
Along the lines of (shorten to: like)
As a matter of fact (in fact)
As to whether (whether)
At all times (always)
At the present (now or currently)
At this point in time (now or currently)
Be able to/would(n’t) be able to (could or couldn’t)
Because of the fact that (because)
By means of (by)
Due to the fact that (because)
Even though (though or although)
For the purpose of (for)
For the reason that (because)
Have the ability to (could)
In light of the fact that (because)
In order to (to)
In regards to (on or about)
In spite of the fact that (though or although)
In the event that (if)
In the nature of (like)
In the neighborhood of (about)
On the occasion of (when)
On one/two separate occasions (Once/twice)
The/A majority of (most)
There is no doubt that (No doubt)
Wasn(n’t) capable of (could or couldn’t)
Hope this helped, and happy writing!
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Resources for Writing Injuries
Patreon || Ko-Fi || Masterlist || Work In Progress
General Information | More
Diffuse Axonal Injury
Blunt cardiac injury
Pneumothorax (traumatic pneumothorax, open pneumothorax, and tension pneumothorax)
Penetrating injuries (see also, gunshot wound & stab wound sections)
Heart (Blunt Cardiac Injury)
General Information | More
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Injuries to ligaments
Injuries to tendons
Chemical Eye Burns
Subconjunctival Hemorrhages (Eye Bleeding)
Skin & Bleeding
General Information (Skin Injuries) | More (Arteries)
femoral artery (inner thigh)
thoracic aorta (chest & heart)
abdominal aorta (abdomen)
brachial artery (upper arm)
radial artery (hand & forearm)
common carotid artery (neck)
aorta (heart & abdomen)
axillary artery (underarm)
popliteal artery (knee & outer thigh)
anterior tibial artery (shin & ankle)
posterior tibial artery (calf & heel)
arteria dorsalis pedis (foot)
Abrasions (Floor burns)
In the Head
In the Neck
In the Shoulders
In the Chest
In the Abdomen
In the Legs/Arms
In the Hands
In The Feet
In the Head
In the Neck
In the Chest
In the Abdomen
In the Legs/Arms
Guide to Story Researching
A Writer’s Thesaurus
Words To Describe Body Types and How They Move
Words To Describe…
Writing Intense Scenes
Masterlist | WIP Blog
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Why you Should Continue Writing that Story
no one else is gonna write it that way
literally the way you piece words together is so unique
think about it this way: you're making shit up from your brain and making it a readable thing
like you get to share your thoughts with the world
how cool is that
no but think of how cool the cover of your book is gonna look like
imagine all the cool fonts and the way you can design it
think about little details around the chapter names
Think About All The Cool Chapter Titles
bc you're a goddamn good writer and if you say otherwise you're simply so incredibly wrong <3
all the hidden stuff you can put inside of it
like think about all the secrets and shit
it's so cool
your book's gonna smell so nice
like dude don't you love the smell of books
you can brag about it for an eternity
IMAGINE ALL THE GAY
ALL THE POSSIBILITIES
one day it could be made into a movie
or a tv show
how fucking cool is that
you're written in the history
as someone smart btw
your story is so sexy
like damn look at that characterisation
i could never
shiiit dude look at that dialogue !! it's almost like you dug up shakespeare or some shit
your majesty What is that description ?? how do you make it so magical ??
because it's literally so exciting
Because You Get To Write The One Bed Trope
you can fall in love with your characters
so many times over and over
you can make all of them bi
you get to explore the furthest corners of the human mind
You Get To Do That
you learn about everything
because you'll learn how to kill someone for free
for the pure satisfaction of having a female sarcastic villain
you literally have so much freedom. like holy shit you can write about anything you could've ever imagined. like holy shit.
you have the power to stop the time or make humans fly or breathe underwater or make new worlds and new languages and new societies and have so many conspiracy theories
and literally there's nothing stopping you like how exciting is that ??
like dude ?????
you get to play with ocs like they're barbie dolls except you're making it very very real
you have the power to help someone discover themselves
you can make someone laugh
You Get To Make Someone Feel The Shrimp Emotions
you can ?? invent ?? stuff ??
like you can totally bullshit your way through facts. facts are nothing. they don't stop you. if you say they'll walk from milano from mispisspisi then they will !
you can travel without leaving your house
you can touch people's hearts and touch their souls and make them feel so many things
literally you have all the power in the world
LOOK AT YOU
YOU'RE TAKING RANDOM ASS WORDS
AND MAKING MAGIC
so why would you stop
stop making writing seem so hard and dark and boring and hard
DON'T KILL THE JOY
BECAUSE OF THE FACT IT'S HARD TO PUBLISH A BOOK
THE JOY IS STILL THERE
no but seriously imagine all the gay like hooolly shitt
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Hi! I hope your day has been well :) I need some advice on writing kiss scenes from the 3rd pov, if you can. If not, thats alright too :)
Here are some guidelines for writing kiss scenes:
Avoid cliches. As a general rule, if you find yourself writing a phrase to describe a kiss that you know you have read before, don't use it. Saying the kiss felt like fireworks or tasted like chocolate or that their lips locked or that their tongues twined is only describing the idea of a kiss, not THIS kiss between THESE characters.
Don't focus on physical actions. Keep track of what is physically happening but you don't need to do a play by play. Everyone knows what kissing is and there are only so many ways to physically go about it. The reader will still understand what is happening. Too much explanation can make the scene feel like reading a manual.
Focus on the emotions. The action of kissing is usually the same but what people feel each time is going to be different. What sensations, thoughts, and emotions are they experiencing? Use precise details and vivid wording that is true to each character.
Consent and respect are sexy. Make sure it is clear both characters are ready and willing and into the kiss.
Consider what happens just before and what happens next. Kisses do not exist in an isolated bubble and so much of the tone and emotion comes from how the scene is built up and how the characters react after the kiss is finished.
Don't use a kiss to prove the characters are in love. Refer to this post if you need ideas to show characters being in love without resorting to them kissing.
Examine existing kiss scenes. Look at your favorite kisses. What is it about them that makes them so good? Also examine kiss scenes you dislike and figure out why they don't work for you then avoid those things.
And here is a great article with tips to write intimate scenes from Springhole.net.
Hope this helps! =)
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hi jana!!! hope you're doing good <3. i was wondering if you could provide me with some tips on how to write witty banter between two characters (i couldn't find anything in your masterpost). i'm currently writing a enemies to lovers story, and my characters are rivals in class who end up getting a group project together (yes very cliché ahahaha). there are instances where they end up being in vicinity of each other for things other than their project, which actually leads them to fall in love with each other (i was thinking parties, library, common friends, restaurants). i hope i gave you enough insight on my plot <3 thank you in advance!
Doing great right now, hope you do too!
How to write witty banter
Get to know your characters
You need to know more about your characters than you're actually showing all the time
Don't make them out of character for the sake of being witty, some people just aren't
Decide on what they like and what they believe in - and what not
When to use it
To help the reader understand your characters and their humor and their preferences better
To further the plot through the characters' interactions
How to use it
Don't just write jokes after jokes without real meaning
Make it relevant to the characters and their personalities and the current situation they are in
Think of the different opinions the characters have that are strong enough to be playfully debated, but not serious enough to he substantial
> Ex. In a café setting, the characters playfully make fun of each other's choice in coffee order.
I hope this helps and good luck with your story!
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BUILD A CHARACTER (Masterpost)
- Name Generator
- Reedsy Generator
- Fake Name Generator
- Fantasy Name Generator
- Baby Names
- Baby Center
- Long Names List by @leafvy
- Giant Name List by @serifsystem
- Dark Academia Inspired Names by @victoriahazelnut
- Dark Academia Inspired Names part II by @victoriahazelnut
- Modern Names Similar to Constellations by @victoriahazelnut
- Personality Generator
- Random Character Traits Generator by @lucalicatteart
- Random Zodiac Sign Generator
- Zodiac Generator
- 638 Personality Traits
- Character Traits List with Examples
- 800 Character Traits: The Ultimate List (+ How to Develop a Good Character Step-by-Step)
- The Signs in a Relationship by @neo-wonderland
- Character Flaws by @madswritess
- A List of Character Quirks by @psychidion
- Victorian Detective by @iamacuteapplepie
- Little Quirks for Future Reference by @elvenwinters
- Things your Character Might be Afraid of by @rpmemesbyarat
- Masterlist of Characters’ Deepest Fears by @bailey-writes
- Kassoon Backstory Generator
- Character Biography Generator
- How to Write Compelling Character Backstories: Step-by-Step Guide
- Childhood Memory Generator
- 33 Life Events For Your Character’s Backstory by @creativerogues
- Important Life Events
- Past Traumas by @blackacre13
>Goals & Motives
- Character Goal Generator
- Character Motivation Generator
- Motive Generator
- Secret Generator
- 300 Secrets for your Character by @crissverahelps
- What Secret does your Character Keep?
- 150 secrets/plots by @sunshineandtearph
- Appearence Generator
- Portrait and Figure Drawing References
- Appearence Adjectives
- Adjectives to Describe People
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Writing absolutely was easier when you were younger simply because you knew less of the craft. The more you learn increases the pressure to live up to your own knowledge base. You can see flaws in your work that you (probably) weren’t aware of before and this gives the false impression of creative back-sliding. This can be extremely discouraging and you may long for those early days when writing seemed so much easier. But that longing is rooted in a lie. Ignorance truly is bliss. So take pride in the fact that your struggles are the byproduct of improving your craft. Your work is not as bad as you think, you simply have a much stronger magnifying glass than you used to so the flaws seem bigger than they truly are.
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Hello~~ thank you for helping us writers 💕 I was wondering if you have any tips on motions/actions like turning one's head etc (example: *character* turned her head to the side in an attempt to hide her rose tinted cheeks) i find that I use that kind of motion a alot in my story. The word 'turning' gets really overused and I was wondering if there are other alternatives to how it can be written? Thank you so much!
Struggling with Action Descriptions
There are two things to consider when you find yourself overusing verbs like turned/turning:
1) Check for Overuse - More than likely, you have too many instances where your character is turning their face or body in another direction. Look at each occurrence and consider the emotion you're trying to convey. In your example, you're trying to convey embarrassment by having the character turn to hide their blushing cheeks, but there are other external cues to indicate embarrassment other than blushing and hiding one's cheeks. For example, grimacing or wincing, fidgeting, covering one's face with hands, slumping shoulders or sliding down in one's chair, hiding face behind something.
Also, look to see if you have too many moments where a person is conveying that emotion. If you have 7 scenes where your character is embarrassed, it might be worth asking whether all 7 of those moments accomplish something unique. If not, you might look into cutting all but a few of them.
2) Look for Synonyms - Sometimes you just need to find another word that means the same thing. For example, you could say, "She pivoted to the side to hide her face," or "She looked away, attempting to hide her face."
I hope that helps! ♥
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Unusual words with beautiful meanings
Peregrinate (verb) To travel or wander around from place to place.
Serendipity (noun) Finding something good without looking for it.
Nemophilist (noun) One who is fond of forest; A haunter of the woods.
Eudaimonia (noun) The contented happy state you feel when you travel.
Eleutheromania (noun) The intense desire for freedom.
Hireath (noun) A homesickness for a home to which you cannot return, a home which maybe never was.
Idyllic (adj.) Like an idyll; extremely happy, peaceful, or picturesque.
Clinomania (noun) Excessive desire to stay in bed.
Seatherny (noun) the serenity one feels when listening to the chirping birds.
Eunoia (noun) beautiful thinking a balanced mind.
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any other writers out there ever read a paragraph of your own work and just, in the least self centered way possible, think
fuck, i’m such a good writer.
if you haven’t, that day will come eventually, i promise. but until then, keep writing whatever your little working brain tells you, because one day you’ll consider it a masterpiece or absolute shit that’ll make you laugh and realize just how far you’ve come.
keep writing words so your future self has stuff to look back on and either compare to current wips, or to reminisce on. words are permanent as long as you let them be.
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things that make a monarch powerful and successful besides war?
How to Write a Good Ruler
There’s more to leading than just winning wars.
Throughout history, many empires were forged with blood by powerful warriors, who pushed their countries’ borders by slaughtering everyone in their paths. However, many of them never lasted very long in the grand scheme of things, because there’s more to running a country than simply having good military power.
This post isn’t about how to write a good ruler character, this post is about the qualities of being a good ruler. Making someone a perfect, immaculate ruler doesn’t necessarily make them a well-written character (and just because a character is a good ruler doesn’t have to mean they’re a good person) so you have to take into consideration basic concepts of character building, which you can find on my FAQ.
Now, I can’t possibly outline every single aspect of a good ruler within a single Tumblr post, so take this list as a kind of bare-bones guideline meant to boost your inspiration and give you a bit of direction.
1. A Good Ruler is Honorable
If you want your character’s subjects to respect them, then they must be a respectable person.
If your character goes around spending thousands on lavish treasures and banquets while their country starves, then they're probably not gonna have the best Yelp rating from their subjects.
A good ruler is respectful, honest, and treats not only the nobles of under their rule with respect, but also the commoners. They spend tax money on infrastructure, food, and charity. They follow proper etiquette and set an example for those who look up to them. And they spend their time working--hearing petitioners, filing paperwork, holding diplomatic meetings, signing trade agreements, strategizing battles, etc.--rather than making merry.
Benevolent rulers in fiction are often the embodiment of honor and goodwill...which is why they die so frequently within the story--to serve as a symbol of the "death of good" that the villain has brought to the land.
2. A Good Ruler is Just
One of the main jobs of a ruler is to pass sentences (or in most cases, have their courts pass sentences on their behalf). If your character acts on a “guilty until proven innocent” basis and executes fifty people a week, they’re probably only a ruler because everyone is afraid of them...not because they’re actually a “good ruler.”
They should be open to acts of mercy without teetering into “pushover” territory, and never allow wrongdoing to go unpunished.
This way, with their strong moral compass established, their subjects can all concur that anyone who gets executed under your character’s rule must’ve deserved it due to your character’s just nature.
3. A Good Ruler is Always Looking to Improve
Despite boing born into a lifestyle where you’re practically revered as godlike, a good ruler doesn’t think they are the end-all-be-all of everything. They often seek counsel from both their advisors and their subjects, and take criticism in stride rather than executing anyone who may dare to defy them.
In fact, a good ruler always knows when to ask for help, especially when it involves something that they have no prior experience with. If you want your young character to be a good ruler, then they most definitely must have a strong group of advisors such as noblemen, spiritual guides, generals, bankers, and other such people at their back to help them manage their kingdom.
4. A Good Ruler Knows When to Be Fierce
Though this may sound a bit harsh, part of the reason why anyone is ever a ruler (or in a position of power) at all is because the subjects are a little bit afraid of them. If your character has all of these other attributes, people will serve them willingly and this fear shouldn't necessarily be required, but think about it; why do we follow the law? Why do we allow our country to be run by people, some of whom we may respect but most whom we find intolerable?
A good ruler knows when to make an example out of people. No matter how amazing this ruler is, there will be people discontent under their power. There will be assassination attempts, coups, and rebellions. Allowing these things to slide without punishment will open up the doors for the ruler to be deemed “weak” and lose respect, so in these situations you should allow your ruler character to bring down the gavel…and some public executions may be in order.
Examples of Good Rulers in Fiction
Ned Stark, Game of Thrones
Ned Stark is the paragon of an even-tempered, moral leader within the Game of Thrones series and novels, and is revered by many characters within the story due to his stoic, honorable nature. One of the primary examples of his righteousness is his motto: “Whoever passes the sentence must swing the sword. If you would take a man's life, you owe it to him to look into his eyes and hear his final words. And if you cannot bear to do that, then perhaps the man does not deserve to die.”
Aslan, The Chronicles of Narnia
Although you may poke fun at the fact that Aslan is a lion, there is no doubt that he is one of the wisest and bravest rulers in literature. He is fierce and dangerous, but unquestionably good, and all of his subjects have steady faith in his abilities. He is willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of his people, even if it is just for a single one.
Aragorn, Lord of the Rings
Despite being reluctant to take up the throne, Aragorn overcomes his hesitancy and assumes his role as rightful king so he can lead an army of the undead into battle against Sauron. Aragon is a man of the people, and possesses unwavering bravery and nobility, which is no doubt why he is so respected by the fellowship and by his people.
T’Challa, Black Panther
T’Challa often questioned himself and his decisions as ruler of Wakanda, but there is no doubt that he is a level-headed and well-spoken ruler who tries to do the best for his people. He was able to overcome the vengeful nature that consumed him after the death of his father, and went on to help not only his country, but others around the world.
Hope this helped, and happy writing!
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