Character Development


Character chemistry is one of the most important elements in a story. These questions can help you flesh out your couple’s/couples’ relationship(s), find some hidden details to use in your tale, and discover more about your characters in the process. Though the list is written in the past tense, I’ve found it really helpful for planning upcoming scenes and matchmaking possibilities.

Basic Information

  1. What real couples could they be compared to and why?
  2. What fictional couples could they be compared to and why?
  3. What are their common interests?
  4. What is the individual goal of each character?
  5. What are their common goals?
  6. Do their goals conflict?
  7. What are a few of their inside jokes?
  8. What is the core for each character?
  9. How do they reveal their core to the other character?
  10. What are their relationship expectations?
  11. Does either have an addiction?
  12. In what ways do they worry about each other?
  13. How would each character feel if the other had to leave for a time? How would they react if they broke up?
  14. How do they handle dividing up chores and household duties?
  15. Who brings home the bacon and how?
  16. Do they ever resent each other?
  17. What activities do they enjoy doing together? What activities does one enjoy that the other doesn’t?
  18. How do they fight for or defend the other?
  19. How do they express love for each other? (Examples: Acts of service, physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, or receiving gifts.


  1. Who is more grounded?
  2. What values do they both share?
  3. Who takes more responsibility for their actions?
  4. Who is usually more ready to give in and compromise?
  5. Do they feel the same way about money?

How They See Each Other

  1. What habits do they have that makes the other unhappy? (Examples: angry outbursts, disrespectful judgments, annoying behavior, selfish demands, dishonesty, or apathy.)
  2. What do they find most physically attractive about the other?
  3. What do they find least physically attractive about the other?
  4. What do they find most mentally attractive about each other?
  5. What accomplishments do they most admire in each other?
  6. What small physical details does each character love the most about the other?
  7. In what little ways do they disappoint each other?
  8. How would each character most want to better themselves for the other?
  9. What things would each character appreciate the other doing for them?
  10. How do they think the other character sees them?
  11. What little things remind them of each other?
  12. How do they think the other is unique?
  13. What negative traits do they see in the other, and how do they deal with it?
  14. What might they like to change about the other?
  15. What would each character be willing to change in his/herself for the other, and what wouldn’t they change?

General History

  1. How did each character come to trust the other?
  2. What are their shared background experiences?
  3. What are differences in their backgrounds?
  4. What was one moment when one side was weak and the other has to be strong for both?
  5. When are they jealous for the other?
  6. When have they let the other down?
  7. When have they betrayed each other?
  8. What are the most difficult situations they’ve faced together so far, how did they overcome them?
  9. What are their best memories together? What are their worst?
  10. What’s a moment one character felt proud of the other?
  11. Defining Moments And Milestones
  12. How did they meet?
  13. What were their first impressions?
  14. When did they realize they were attracted to the other, and how did they deal with it?
  15. When was the first temptation to kiss? When did they actually kiss?
  16. At what point did each realize they might be in love?
  17. At what point in the story do they most depend on the other character?

Body Language

  1. What are their mannerisms when walking side by side?
  2. How they sit when they talk?
  3. How do they respond to physical closeness?
  4. How do they each act (physically) when confronted with conflict?

How They Act When They’re Together

  1. How does each character behave differently around the other?
  2. How does love make each character act irrationally?
  3. How can each character tell how the other feels? Are they good at it, or bad?
  4. How does being around each other change their thought processes?
  5. What do they share and talk about the most?
  6. What do they do in silent moments? What are they thinking about?
  7. How do they spend time together usually?
  8. What habits do they have that annoy the other?
  9. How do they each react to when the other is hurt or upset? Do they try to help, and how?
  10. How do they spend time on each other’s hobbies or interests?
  11. How would they prefer to spend time when out and about?
  12. What signal do they give when they need some space?

How They Communicate

  1. What is the setting in which they best play off each other?
  2. What is a moment when each character is vulnerable?
  3. How does each character react to the other being vulnerable?
  4. How do they communicate reciprocated feelings?
  5. What do they disagree on and how do they deal with differing opinions?
  6. What sort of things do they get into fights over?
  7. How do they reconcile after arguments?
  8. How do they show affection?
  9. At what times do they usually have most of their conversations?
  10. How honest are they with each other?
  11. How open are they with current feelings?
  12. How do they compromise?
  13. How do they show empathy/sympathy?
  14. In what ways are they in tune to the other’s feelings?
  15. In what ways do they pressure the other, or consciously avoid applying pressure?
  16. In what ways do they validate each other?
  17. What topics are the most painful to each character?
  18. What secret would they never want the other to know?
  19. Is one character too insensitive about something?
  20. What topic always leads to a fight?
  21. What do they want to be resolved the most?
  22. How do they hold each other accountable?
  23. How do they react in times when they can’t cheer the other up?

What They Want For The Future

  1. What are each character’s plans for the future? What plans have they built together, if any?
  2. What is the biggest threat to their relationship? Are they aware it exists?
  3. Do they want children? If so, how many? Do they agree about this?
  4. Have they discussed the future? Why/why not?
  5. Where would their dream home be located? What would it be like?
  6. Where do they think they’ll be in the future together?

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