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Character Reference Sheet-ness

Basically this reference sheet covers pretty much everything a person would ever need to know about your character.. and then some.

Let’s face it. If somebody were to just glance over the reference sheet, at least you can feel some reassurance in knowing that they got the bare minimum

Name (Nickname):

Please if you’re going to give your character some ungodly, few centuries old, age, make sure to include what age they looks like. Otherwise all shall assume they appear to be a rumpled piece of leather, ran over by some sort of moving vehicle, after being regurgitated by a cat. Obviously, this is a little pet peeve of mine.



List three to five most important things about your character.
If nothing else, people will know this much. This section can also be moved to another part of sheet if preferable.

-Physical Details-
Next most important part, next to personality. Really essential if you’re using your character in a tournament or in some other way in which other people need to understand said character.
Everybody hates it when they have to work with some under-described character. Facts, people! Descriptions, we need ‘em.
Even if you’re not using your character for a competition, but for personal writing instead, a solid physical description helps wonderfully for your writing. It’s nice to have a clear picture in your head.

Build/Body Type/Physical Frame:



Or fur, scales, whatnot. Just make sure you describe it.

Hair: color/texture/length/cut


Other defining features/extra anatomy:
ears, teeth, tails, wings, scars, deformities, disabilities

Good (smiles a lot) or bad (smoking, drinking)

animated, none, sweeping, small

How does he/she carry himself/herself?

slang, aristocratic tone, any speech patters

elegant, shabby, normal, etc.

Make sure to not just focus on style or simple descriptions, but also include any accessories (jewelry, glasses, piercings, tattoos, make-up)

On a side note: If the character has alternate forms, make sure to clearly describe/differentiate them. If they are strongly different and/or very important to the whole story, think about creating different sections for each form.

Really, I believe that personality is the key to making your character original, stand out, or just overall complete and well-rounded. I want to see the depth of his/her personality, want it to be believable. Nobody likes a character that is far less interesting than a wet mop.
If you are anything like me, at times you may struggle with fully explaining the personality of the character that you have so nicely visioned. It’s okay, you’re not alone in the feeling that you need to explain (in horrid and absolute detail) so that the character floating around in your mind makes sense on paper.
Because of this, the personality section, at least for me, tends to be quite long. I find that this process not only helps me expand and understand my character better, but also further develop him/her past the image in my head.

Part One: Basic Info
Plain ol’ makes ‘em happy.

And other things he/she tries to avoid.

What does he/she do in his/her spare time?

What is he/she good at? Doesn’t even have to be super relevant.



Best Quality:
Only one. Come on, this is no bragging fest. Maybe two if they’re closely related.

Greatest Flaw:
Don’t you even dare say he/she doesn’t have one, because everybody does. Maybe his/her flaw is that they think they don’t have any. D<

Character Strengths:

And the coinciding weaknesses:

List a number of them. They can be funny, or possibly used to further divulge the characters behavior.

One thing he/she is and one thing he/she is not.
For example: smart, but not wise; nice, but not friendly; pessimistic, but not an asshole/jerk; fast, but not strong.. etc.

What he/she wants (ex: move towards) and doesn’t want (ex: move away from, avoid)
This part can go a couple different ways, depending on your take.. but I think you all can deal with it.

Part Two: In-depth Analysis (If you really want, this part can be omitted.)</i>

How does the character picture himself/herself?
Strengths and weaknesses, upon other qualities, they may think they have.

How do others see him/her?
Behavior that is actually shown, and which others have interpreted.

Five adjectives that he/she would use to describe his/herself.

Five adjectives others would use to describe him/her.

Most valued possession:

Darkest secret and/or treasured memory:

Most proud accomplishment and or greatest failure:

Is he/she motivated by possibility or necessity?
This question dwells upon the character’s life. Is it hard and he/she does things because he/she needs to, is he/she comfortable, doing only things that please them? A bit of both?

Current motivation:
Greed, power, love, lust, revenge, money, to win/come out on top, hate, freedom, survival?

How does he/she view the future and/or the past?
aspirations, goals, objectives, regrets

What is his/her philosophy on life and death?

What kind of energy level do they usually have?
perky, somber, tired, aggressive, pumped, mood swings?

How does he/she show and/or handle: love, affection, grief, pain, anger, sadness, conflict, change, loss?

Does he/she have a temper?
If so, displayed actively or more passive aggressively?

How does he/she respond to the surrounding world, the ‘unfamiliar,’ and other people in general?
Empathetic, judgmental?

Polite or rude?

Stingy or generous?
Your choice to decide of what.

What kind of ‘public’ face does he/she display?
Put up a front, open emotions, two faced

Leader or a follower?

More happy by themselves or in a group?

Does he/she have any addictions/dependencies/fixations/fetishes/ or other strange behavior?

What is his/her sexual preference/experience/values?
Of course, couldn’t leave this one off the list. It’s just so darn fun. xD

Now, we move onto the background of the character. What’s a person without their past? Our history makes us who we are today. Blah blah, inspirational mumbo jumbo.
There might not be a lot of sub-headings is this one, but the ‘backstory’ part is usually a mini story in itself. So, have fun. ^^

Time period, current residence, any other basic descriptions needed

If eligible.. and if not, explain why.

Educational background/other learning experiences:

Intelligence Level:

Short Term Goals:

Long Term Goals:

Make sure to describe the family life and the relationships.

Same goes.. make sure to describe the relationship.

Birth order, major events in his/her life. This part can be very detailed or really vague.

This is more of an ‘if applicable’ section. It’s really only important if you plan to use your character in a tournament or competition. But then again, sometimes it’s just good to  know these things about your character for personal interest.

Physical Strength:


Fighting Style:
technique, talents, skills, predictability

Unusual Abilities/Powers:
rate these on some sort of scale

Weapons/Other Gear:

And if you are entering a tournament, please make sure to include an actual reason why.
This all started because of some characters and basic plot ideas I’ve had floating around in my head as of lately. These simple daydreams slowly progressed into something more structured, and soon I found myself wanting to elaborate on them. But of course, with all of these random facts circling in my mind, I felt the need to figure out some semi organized way to write them down or otherwise forget everything.

Soon though, I realized what I had been writing out was completely scrambled and that I still wanted to develop the characters more. So, I searched around for a reference sheet to fill out. Not finding one that fit all of my needs/wants as far as character development. I decided to mash together the important parts of a few, adding my own insight as I went along.. and wah-la!

Now I have an overly detailed reference sheet that I can fill out. :D

Like I said, feel free to use it for your own needs, and any more suggestions or additions as to what other topics can be included, please share!
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crazy to think even 12 years later this is still helping people

including me!

thank you C: