EXERCISE Mary Sue Makeover

Discussion in 'DEVELOPING CHARACTERS & CULTURES' started by Diana, May 14, 2013.

  1. A "Mary Sue" or "Gary Stu" is a character who is perfect, beautiful, smart, talented, powerful - to the point impossibility. Often containing a mish-mosh of traits, qualities, and other things that make -no- sense, or are completely unexplained. Other characters seem to be in love with them, obsessed with them, or hate them for no particular reason. They are strong with badass fighting skills or tons of limitless magic that they can pull out of no where without consequence or weakness. These characters are often very bland, lackluster things -because- they have been packed filled with TOO MUCH. They no longer seem like a real person.

    The traits you see in Mary Sues are not inherently bad in themselves! The error comes from slapping these things on to a character without giving it rhyme, reason, and having it make sense in a timeline and setting.

    In this exercise, take FIVE traits you feel are "Mary Sue Traits" and put them together in a creative, thoughtful, and interesting way.

    To help here is the TV Tropes List of Common Mary Sue Traits! Pick the ones you want to work with.

    Remember Some of These Tips:
    - If a character has a lot of talents like art, music, cooking, language, dancing, etc, consider how much time it took to learn all of those things.
    - If a character has someone obsessed with them (for any reason) what sort of reasons make that character WORTH being obsessed over.
    - If a character has flawless beauty, where does that beauty come from and how do they maintain it?
    - If a character has tons of super powers, where did all of those super powers come from and what could the ill effects or weakness of those be?
    - If a character has a cliche background (dead parents, rape, horrible breakups, stalkers, murder, suicides), what are some new twists to tired old cliches?
    - If a character has this wonderful, sweet, kind, amazing, personality, what are some personality flaws they might have?
    - If a character is depressed, broody, stoic, quiet, or sad all the time - what are the reasons behind it? Are they really good reasons?
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  2. Were do I sign in I never trid anything like this it sound fun XD someone will be showing me how to do this right????? O.o O.O o.O
  3. Shall I post my character here when she/he is done or what? xD
  4. Adalia K. Rosen, age 15.

    Her uncle gave her a large katana when she was ten. Unfortunately, he never taught her how to use it. Even less fortunate, she can barely lift it, so she can often be seen dragging it along the ground behind her. She wouldn’t even keep it if he hadn’t said it was part of the prophecy.

    She has a strong connection with nature. She can converse with animals, and they are naturally drawn to her. Unfortunately, they won’t leave her alone! Not to mention, animals aren’t exactly civilized or even half-way intelligent. Once, she tried running away from her uncle’s farm to the city, but the vermin there were just plain nasty.

    Her uncle has her parents chained up in the storm cellar. She has been taught they are a hindrance to the fulfillment of the prophecy. Occasionally, she brings them bread and milk. In a way, she prefers them to the animals – they don’t speak anymore.

    She has long, flowing, chestnut brown hair that takes half an hour to brush each morning. She washes her hands three times a day at regular intervals. Her eyes are a fascinating midnight blue, but that’s not the only reason nobody ever looks at her chest. She has a small scar on her jaw from an argument with a goat; she still hasn’t forgiven him.

    She has limited empathy and has been systematically brainwashed by her uncle. Her childhood animal ‘friends’ haven’t exactly taught her well, either.
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  5. Luna Martin, age 16.
    She was born in what she thought was a normal family. But she soon noticed it was not like that. Talking behind the doors, her being beat up every time she would try to ask. Eventually, her mother died of what her father said happened to be "a terrible accident" and when she attempted to ask about this she was in for another beating. She tried to cope with it and go to her school without complaining, but eventually she gave in to the pressure and ran away from home. She didn't make it long when some friends of their family found them, and offered to send her to a school far away from her father. She gladly accepted the offer and off she was for a new life. Throughout her life, and even to this day, Luna has been experiencing nightmares - nightmares she wouldn't be able to explain even if she were given the chance. Once she had heard her parents talking, listening through a door, hearing something like "inherited" "passed down through generations" "curse" and "Luna" in the same line of speaking. She hoped it was just nightmares, nightmares and not a curse.

    Luna has a very strange trait - she has a red shade of eyes, which is almost purple looking. Most would think it to be because she is an albino, but it was simply an actual mistake in her genes that made her eyes a strange color. She hates them a lot, it makes her appear strange to others, so she usually wears brown contacts (because of her black hair, sort of to match). Her hair is very long and smooth and it takes just a few million minutes and hair products to keep it that way. She usually spends a little while on braiding it to keep it looking nice.

    She never goes back to her hometown. The thing that her father did, and all the years before that. When she still had lived back there, she had been sent to this private academy, for "young and polite little ladies" where she had been practically forced in learning to play the piano, violin, write calligraphy and dance ballet. She had hated it for those almost five years it had lasted, but this has also made her talented in mentioned subjects. Even if she hates everything about that godforsaken school. The worst thing had been the other girls in the all girls academy calling her "Luna Lunatic" because well... she came from a different life than they did, and oh, she had strange eyes so why not bully her a little.

    Luna is very religious. Or, maybe not religious, but when she was little, she saw this boy in her dreams, who talked to her and calmed her down when the times were worst, when the nightmares had seemed to take over her entire being. She believes this boy is her guardian angel and that he will help her to get over her hardships. She believes that this boy protects her from "the curse" that she had heard her father mention.

    Luna has a hard time being honest with herself - she's always dissastisfied and changes her personality, thus creating a perfect little "mask" to show to others. Inside she feels lonely because of this, and she, like her father, has a tendency to lose her temper. She once almost beat up one of the girls at the school for using a certain very bad word against her. She didn't regret it, and doesn't to this day.

    (( I have this feeling she's a Mary sue I don't like Mary Sue traits so I usually don't use them... especially the many abilities, usually my characters can do one thing and then suck at everything else... and then I dunno about that name. I like pretty sounding names, and unisex names ; u ; If this is a Mary Sue I'll redo her xD I don't even like her that much... ))
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  6. Koene and Minagi got the right idea! 8D You do it just like that!
  7. Did that like mean that I didn't create a Marysue? :'D
  8. You have a great interpretation Minagi! >:3 Is a great start for a character.
  9. I'm actually really thankful to hear that >< I really want to practice making characters because I write a bunch. (Which is mostly stories that I'm SO embarrassed over that they never reach the Internet)
    And... well do you want to roleplay with me, perhaps? (We could take this to PM's and talk about it? :3)
  10. ok i will try if things are missed spelled i blame it on this stupid kobo
    so wait do i just make a random charater or each day the siting will change?
  11. This is an exercise, so you just do it once to practice your plotting skills! :D Or you can do the exercise multiple times if you really want to.

    And I will send a PM to Minagi!
  12. it is so not an exercise im just stating that my Kobo sucks and ok let think
  13. Reginald Quincentenial Rockefeller had everything a billionaire could want: money, power, beautiful women. Even a few guys. Problem was, he didn't want any of it.

    Reggie was born the heir to his Father's multinational corporate Empire, MidPoint. MidPoint created a 'halfway haven' for aspiring musicians, artists, poets, inventors, and the like, profiting by taking a small percentage of the artists income, in return for advertising and promoting them. His father died on Reggie's sixth birthday of a heart attack, leaving the young boy to head his corporation. For the past twenty three years, he managed his fathers business, and learned how to play various international instruments. He also learned how to fence, and learned of his fathers underground business. He also became the heir to an international Crime Syndicate. He was never happy, though.

    For his schooling, Reggie was sent away to a boarding school in Korea, where he became excellent in math, the Arts, and fluent in most Asian languages, before being sent home. He was never happy at school. Everyone liked him, but he figured it was because he was the son of George Rockefeller, one of the richest men in Europe.

    Back home, he took his fathers place in the board chair. He was now the CEO of MidPoint. He ran the business well, bringing in excellent profits and tons of new business. The company had reached the top of it's game, and showed no signs of coming down.

    To escape the stress of the workplace, Reggie would often travel to a distant field far away from the hustle and bustle of his life. He would sit there for hours relaxing on the face of a lush, green, grassy hill, underneath an oak tree. The only problem was that this hill was a place in his mind, nonexistent. He would awake from his daydream, only to find he was back to the place he was before, which made him feel even worse. Kind of like getting high to cope with depression, but coming down and realizing it's still there, so it gets heavier.

    Years after his fathers death, he found out it wasn't heart attack, the coroners lied. His Father was in major debt to another crime lord, so he bit down on a cyanide capsule so he was dead and wouldn't have to worry about dealing with the pain of watching his family suffer slow, painful deaths.

    After learning of this, Reggie became a ruthless business man, buying out other companies like his before they had a chance to pose a threat. He also became ruthless in the organized crime world, ordering dozens of hit contracts and bombings to eliminate competition in both of his businesses. He was also a playboy, often juggling the hearts -and breasts- of several women at a time.

    He was never really happy with his lifestyle though, really only wanting to find that one, perfect girl to settle down in the countryside with and raise a family of his own. He most likely wouldn't get that chance, but hey, a guy could dream.

    ((did I do it right? Not sure... I don't create too many Mary Sue/Gary Stu characters.))
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  14. ( I might as well put a note here. I wrote this all while listening to Pirate Music... That's where most of the inspiration came from. Also from The King Killer Chronicles, Hartio Hornblower, and Sid Meier's Pirates. )

    P.S. I wrote a lot so I put it all in a spoiler... As not to make it impossible to scroll.
    Show Spoiler

    "Listen here." I spoke to scribe. "If you are writing my biography. A tale of true epicness to my legacy then you have to get it right."

    "I understand that. Thats why I found you specifically."

    "Good. Now one. You have to understand the name. The Undefeated Profound Dread Pirate Admiral Luciful Artimenner!"

    "Yes. The Artimenner is the name the King of Albion gave you after the Sun God flew you down in a golden casket."

    "Precisely! Now the titles!" I smiled to him as I got in position for the painter. "As you must have heard I was a strapping young lad. Blessed with might and beauty from the very gods themselves!" I threw my hands in the air as I said so. "All of the ladies had wooed and awed at me. I wore golden crowns and had dueled the most famous lords in all of Albion! I was destined for a life of glory and greatness! Once I turned twelve it was my time to join Albion's Royal Fleet! Normally a lords son would be able to sign up as a mid ship men at my age but since I was the son of the gods and the Kings adopted child I was put in as a Captain's Personal Assistant! Normally most men would have to serve five years as an Officer to earn such a title as that! Within a year I had mastered the skills of seamen ship and learning the magnificent ways of war. I had bested the best of the French Navy! I was infallible!"

    "Wasn't infallible the name of your first ship?"

    "Indeed! My most treasured possession. At Thirteen I was my own Captain, I led a Ship of the Line. It traveled from the Caribbean and back to fight the French nobility. I had learned how to fit in with a crew. Make them my best friends, get them on my side. It was then that I learned of the average humans life. Drinking at bars, finding whores and such. It was a fine time. We drank and talked of the life back at home. I was sure I would join them after we got back to London. Once we did I didn't go back to the five anchor castle I had to myself but instead I enjoyed my time with them. It was marvelous! Then two years later after more serving Albion, I earned the title of Admiral. I led the the best Fleet! I truly learned tactics and how to sword fight. But the most important thing I was taught was intrigue and how to lead not just men but leaders of men. I learned how to deal with the disloyal and how to live life as a Noble man and run a kingdom. While I wasn't running a Kingdom I might as well have, boats were fiefs and captains were lords."

    "So a year later I believe your Fleet was attacked by demons correct?"

    I stared at him for a second. He might have seen the fire in my eyes by the way he cowered back. His pen scribbled a little ink on the paper he was writing on. "Yes." The Artist asked me to face the other way again. "Of course." I turned back to the scribe. "Our Fleet had been sailing to the land beyond the dry desert. The very tip of the land. It was there where we ran into storms. Most fleets would have been torn apart if it not for my brilliant way to fight agans't the wind and waves using beams to connect all the ships together. We made it through the storm, there was only one recorded tale of a fleet that had before. But even after half of them had died. We didn't even lose an eighth of our people."

    "Then the demons came? Correct?"

    "Yes. They came with their fire, curses and banshees. They sucked in the souls of the men who weren't being burned or banished into a thousand hells. The fleet burned and the creatures of hell feasted. I had fought back agains't several using my rapier. However I was no match for the magical beasts, even though I had the brilliance and physique of a god, I didn't have the magic."

    "I thought the story was you had cast upon the power within you to slay all of the Devils with just your bare hands."

    I gave a roaring laugh. "No, that was but a sweet lie my dear writer. The truth is much darker. I had escaped, run off like a coward. But any man would have, god or not, there was no way of saving anyone else or fighting back with a small sliver of success. Once I had escaped I ran across the Southern Plains. I was chased by creatures you couldn't imagine. Large cats with fangs the size of your finger that could run faster than a horse. Little impish creatures, they were like the monkeys from Tortuga. There was striped horses, rabid dogs and all the like. After fighting back agains't the horrific and beautiful creatures of the South I ran into one of their tribes. I was a guest there. I stayed for what seemed like years, I learned their language and way of life. Travelling, living off the land, fighting agains't other tribes and dancing. So much dancing, all kinds of colors and fanciful dresses."

    "Is that where the ribbons on your cutlass come from?"

    "Yes, you are so observant. I became intwined with the Tribe. I became one of them but then one day a wild pack of cow like creatures invaded and tore apart most of the Tribe. I managed to escape with my life besting one of the wild beasts with my bare hands. I traversed the land living as I had before just without the Tribe before I ran into a wise man, he called himself a Shaman. I had told him the story of my life so far and he offered to take me in as a student of his arts. I learned the ways of sorcery and divine magic. He taught me how to reach into my inner self and release the true power within me and how to use the mana that floated in the air to do my bidding."

    "Thats where you learned your magic?"

    "There wasn't any where else in the world where I could have learned. Soon enough he taught me of a way to get back home. While it would be a hard one he told me the journey of a man called Marco Polo. He said that I must take it upon myself to perform a pilgrimage to the Middle Kingdom and land of the sun and that there I would find my true purpose as Marco Polo had. And so I went I traveled up the South fighting all sorts of creatures and Tribes of people. I had learned how to survive, cast magic with mana, use the divine energy and live off of the land in there. I traveled past the great dry sea and into a land where they believed in one God. It was fascinating. The Shaman had told me to stay as long as I felt need be. I was educated in their beliefs of how this very Earth was made in only seven days and the tales of a few men and their sacrifices for this god. They taught me how to appreciate architecture. They had the most beautiful buildings, they were temples for their gods."

    "So you didn't travel to the South American Islands and live on an Island Paradise?"

    I smiled. "No that comes much later, don't fret. But I had moved on from the Islamic people and took with me their book of worship. I had been taught how to use the divine power in me to read any language so if you are wondering, language wasn't a problem at the time. But continuing on, I was told a Silk Road which was the only way to travel to the East safely. I went on my way to the Silk Road. I met a man, he was a merchant he told me all sorts of stories and taught me about the stars. I rode with him and his Caravan to the land beyond the great mountains called India. I was in the capital, I stayed the man before he had to embark again. I told him I felt I had to stay and that I would meet him in the afterlife or in the near future."

    "Did you ever meet him again?"

    "No. I still remember his stories however. He was a great man. Simple but great. I stayed in India and I learned about the Middle way. The ways of a man called Buddha. It gave me a new perspective on living and gave me a code to live by. I then felt like moving on and paid for travel to the Middle Kingdom. I was in a town called Bei Jing. It was the biggest city I have ever been in. Gangs and whore houses ruled one district and the next was completely militarized. It was Fantastic. I heard of a man called Confucius who had taught similar values as Buddha. I learned of ancient heroes and the art of war. I was also educated on the needs of common men. I spent lots of my time with the average people, drinking and celebrating and spending the night with Geishas or women who master the arts of music and writing. However not soon after I felt like my journey must continue, I was not destined for drinking every day and considering philosophy with men who had nothing but time to think. I moved on to the Land of the Rising Sun."

    "Sir, The Undefeated Profound Dread Pirate Admiral Luciful Artimenner. I am finished with the painting." I walked over and gazed upon the Artist's work. It was fine, I had hired the best painter to have ever lived.

    "This will do." I flicked him a gold coin a size of a fist. "Off with you." I turned to the writer and sat down at the table. "Where was I?"

    "You were moving to the Land of the Rising Sun."

    "Ah! Indeed! The travelling there was beautiful, the way the sun reflected off the ocean and the docks. My god the prettiest boats and views you will ever see!" I smiled remembering. "I met a man on a boat to the Land of the Rising Sun. He called it Japan. He had a wife and family there. He traveled so far West to the center of Europe to try and make his art pay for food and living. He had failed in his progress and he couldn't pay for himself and the money he sent back was minimal. Not many people found the Oriental Paintings as pretty as Western ones. He taught me how to appreciate art and find the beauty in the most simple of things. He told me once that when someone sees a leaf, they see a green thing. But when he saw a leaf he saw a story, a legend. He said it was almost if he could feel and see all the things the leaf had itself. It was... Eye opening to say the least."

    "Interesting, what happened when you arrived at Japan?"

    "Now that is a good story. I arrived and the people and way of living was much like the old kingdoms. During the times when men still wore plates of steel and believed in knighthood. The knights were Samurai, the lords were Daimyos and the King was a Shogun. Their system of government was possibly the best working and most intriguing I have ever witnessed. They would drink tea to discuss and settle their disputes. They taught me that sometimes peace is the right path to follow. But that is not the tale of what the Land of the Rising Sun taught me. I met a group of people in an Inn. They were all drinking and having a good time. I soon joined them in a gambling game. We played, I lost a few coins, all I had really and they laughed. They seemed to enjoy me at the time. I asked if they had any jobs that would pay due to that being the last of coin I had. They said they were sailors and they needed an extra deck hand. My heart skipped a beat, the chance to sail again was something I had wanted all throughout my travels. I gladly joined them and soon discovered they were smugglers."

    "So that is where the Orient ship 'Junk' came from?"

    "Hah. Yes. It sailed all the way across the Ocean of Treachery."

    "Why was it named Junk?"

    "Well actually their ships are called Junks and well, after the captain died they elected me as leader and I decided to rename the ship as Junk. It was a good hearted joke. However the Captain had died due to pirate hunters breaking into his hut in the night and slaughtering him. That was when we realized that we weren't anonymous and we had to get out of there before we got the same treatment. I decided we would sail across the Eastern Ocean. They thought I was mad but I was Captain and it was better than trying to high tail it through the Middle Kingdom. So we sailed. We would have died if it wasn't for a burning island we had happened across. Slow moving fire had taken over most of the land but there was some safe land that had plenty of ball shaped fruit that held mother's milk inside them. We filled the boats and set sail again. That sailing taught me about starving and hope. But never failing and towards the horizon, we sailed without a seeming end. However one day we had spotted land. We stopped there and met a group of Spaniards who have been exploring the local area and they took us back to their town. We docked the boat there and stayed. There was natives there. Me and the Oriental Smugglers liked it there."

    "So that was the Island Paradise?"

    "Yes. Are you familar with what happens next?"

    "You cut your way through the jungle and run over a mountain and then you reach the Spanish Cities in the Caribbean. After of course saying goodbye to the friends you made there because they wanted to stay and you needed to continue."

    "True. It was a journey filled with demise. There was no air on that mountain. Though cruel in the teaching of the lesson it was important. I learned how to not breath and continue without thinking. Before I had learned everything I needed to about thinking, now I learned how to not think. It was one of my most valuable lessons. But soon after I got a ship to Tortuga. I had connections there, I could start to rebuild my life. But along the way our ship gets attacked by The Dread Pirate Roberts. A most revered pirate. Most of our crew had died, we were only a merchant ship. But I grabbed a longsword and fought back agains't the pirates using my magic and swordsmenship. I slayed their captain and then I was crowned as the Dread Pirate Roberts for killing the last one. Basically if you kill the last Dread Pirate Roberts you become him and you get to lead the Ship and the title. So I had them sail back to the cove where the Dread Pirate Roberts keeps his boat. Well I guess it was me then. So I landed there and I saw Infallible my old ship."

    "So you recovered it at the Pirate Cove?"

    "Yes. I met my old crew, they explained the story of how they became pirates and the mid ship man with me became a captain and then they all deserted because the Albion Military was turning corrupt and how they turned to piracy to fight agains't the Tyrants. It was all news for me. But I soon aligned myself with them and began slowly to become a pirate."

    "Uhm, before we go any further, can you explain a bit about the titles."

    "Oh right. Well most of them are self made but each one has its own origin. The Undefeated was well, mostly a myth. I had been mostly undefeated in my time in the Navy and then as a pirate. Only a few occasions where I didn't achieve victory. The Profound comes from all the things I had learned about thinking and how not to think. Lucifel came from my time with the Demons and the rest well, the Dread Pirate, the Admiral and the King."

    "Yes of course. Interesting, I thought those were all tagged on you."

    "Not in the slightest. But moving on, I became a pirate and soon I was revered in the Caribbean as a magical pirate. I threw away the name Roberts and replaced it with my own. I then started to recruit pirates under my command and pretty soon I was running a pirate nation. We owned most of the Gulf of Mexico and some of the Grand Bahamas. It was a jolly good time. We were drinking and celebrating until the dragon came." I could tell by the way he shriveled up he had heard about this part before. "Dragons, haven't been seen since the time of the Dark Ages. It came out from the Sea and began to destroy our capital. Tortuga it was at the time. Many of my people had died and I sailed alone to fight it. I used the might of the gods and everything I had learned to fight it. It didn't work. It still fought valiantly. Such a noble beast. I had started to give up hope though. Then I learned my final lesson. How to die."

    "W-What do you mean?"

    "I learned how to die. You see, you can't truly kill a dragon, you can only try to trap it in yourself by killing yourself and forming a ruby. The dragon's soul due to the greatest sacrifice gets absorbed into the ruby and the dragon's body disappears. Then the trick is to harness that power to keep yourself alive because your soul is gone. You are technically using the Dragon to keep your body and mind from falling into the afterlife."

    I twirled the ruby necklace I wore and looked at him.

    He looked like he was about to soil himself.

    Was it to much? I really got into it and I liked the character a lot... I'm not sure if it quite fit the theme but I tried...

    P.S. Gooooo The Princess Bride References...
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  15. i still dont under stand what to do ahhhhhhhh >^<
    is it like charater sheets but like how you would open an Rp tipe of theing ?
  16. Basically Grimm it's a character making exercise. You present it in whatever way, a bio, like Koene and MiNaGi did or like I did a story... You just basically make a character that is Mary Sue and present him/her in whatever way you want!
  17. oh so i have been asking e wrong Quaeton what is mary seu?
    tell it to me like im as if im one of thous stupid blond please and im not saying blnds are stupid not all of tham re
  18. Okay let me try and be as clear as I can. This is what is called a "creative exercise". In this case, you have to create a character with what is called "Mary Sue traits". In the original post by Diana, she writes a few "typical" Mary Sue traits and also refers to a link containing a list over most common traits. Then you make a character with five of these so-called "traits" giving it meaning and structure and then posting it as a character. I wrote mine as a summary of my character's life, but you are free to do it however you want. I hope this cleared things up just a bit.
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  19. it claers a little bit so i just wright about my charater mainly? but in some what story type of way
  20. You write about your character in the format you would like to write about him/her, giving this character five Mary Sue traits in their story/personality/abilities/appearance.
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