How to keep a main character nameless?

Asked by: Barbara Bierdz

If you want the reader to remain unaware that the character has no name or don’t want the reader wondering about why the character has no name (because you want the reason hidden), then simply tell the story from the first person perspective (people don’t think of themselves by name, but by pronoun, so you don’t have …

How do you not name a character?

Naming Fictional Characters: 10 Tips to Avoid Pitfalls

  • Always Google your Characters’ Names! …
  • Choose Names that Fit the Character. …
  • Choose Names that Begin with Different Letters. …
  • Avoid Generic or Over-Used Names. …
  • Be Creative when Naming Fictional Characters, but Make Names Pronounceable.

Why would a character be nameless?

Novels or stories with nameless protagonists are often dystopian, but leaving a character unnamed is also a way to show that he or she is experiencing a personal crisis of identity.

How do I keep my character mystery?

3 Ways to Create a Bad Mystery in Your Novel

  1. Withhold Basic Need-to-Know Information. Withholding such elementary info as a character’s name, gender, or general goal will not entice readers into reading past the first chapter. …
  2. Withhold Common Knowledge Among Characters. …
  3. Ignore Plot Holes and Plausibility Gaps.


What is a nameless protagonist?

The splendor of nameless protagonists can be most understood when as readers, we realize that we cannot tie them to another other person, clan, or background. They are who they are and we have no other choice to take them as such.

How did JK Rowling come up with names?

J.K. Rowling has been profiled on Nameberry several times, and with good reason- she’s as creative a namer as she is a writer. She draws character names from literature, mythology, history, astronomy, and countless international languages.

Does every character need a name?

Every time you name a character, you’re telling the reader, “This person is important, so remember them.” Or a named character implies a new subplot. Someone bringing scrambled eggs to your protagonist’s table isn’t worthy of a subplot. A character in only one scene does not need an actual name.

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Why is it unusual for a protagonist to have no name?

It isn’t at all unusual for a protagonist not to have a name particulary if the protagonist is also the narrator. The omission of a name lends a mysterious air…. in the end, we have the character… their name is unimportant. In addition, the character of the Invisible Man…. is invisible.

Which novel has a nameless narrator?

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison



The African-American narrator of Ellison’s postwar novel considers himself invisible, and the withholding of his name is a sign that he has no social identity. Ironically, having migrated from the south, he has become a political activist in New York, acquiring a “name” as a speech-maker.

What is the name for a narrator who knows everything that is happening including what each character is thinking?

There are two types of third-person point of view: omniscient, in which the narrator knows all of the thoughts and feelings of all of the characters in the story, or limited, in which the narrator relates only their own thoughts, feelings, and knowledge about various situations and the other characters.

What is a likely reason the author presents a nameless protagonist?

Throughout the story the protagonist remains nameless. This gives the protagonist an anonymity and allows the character to be more versatile. The reader can imagine a variety of people in this position allowing each individual reader to customize the character to their own likings.

Why would a narrator not be named?

If you want to take a second person approach, naming the narrator could be helpful if the character becomes important at all, but leaving him unnamed allows the author to focus more on the actual protagonist and makes the narrator feel more objective.

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Are there books without characters?

The role of characters is to make the story matter to the reader. Show activity on this post. there is no story without characters, because there is nobody then to experience the passing of time.

Can a story have no protagonist?

Is it possible to have a story without a protagonist? Absolutely. It’s done all the time, just do some quick googles to find examples of this. Normally, it’s a smaller setting with less action, a larger scope with more characters, or everyone is bad and good, etc.

Is there a story with no protagonist?

In fiction, a false protagonist is a literary technique, often used to make the plot more jarring or more memorable by fooling the audience’s preconceptions, that constructs a character who the audience assumes is the protagonist but is later revealed not to be.

How do you write a story without a main character?


So a tree. Might be perceived by the writer as a thinking. And feeling being. And remember the source of story is to overcome suffering. And you do that by going through change.

Can you have a protagonist without an antagonist?

Sometimes, there is no clear distinction of whether a character is a protagonist or an antagonist. Whether their intentions are unknown, their actions are both positive and negative, or they are their own worst enemy, a primary character can be both a protagonist and an antagonist at the same time.

Does every story have a protagonist?

Every single story has to have a protagonist, no matter what. Simply put, no protagonist = no plot. Remember, all other roles are defined in relation to the protagonist — so if you’re currently planning a story, this should be the very first character you flesh out.

How many POVS is too many?

But Evan Marshall in his Marshall Plan for Novel Writing suggests four POV characters are sufficient based on my page count (104,000-ish). He allows up to six for a book in excess of 150,000 pages.

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Can there be 2 main characters?

So can you write a story with more than one main character? The short answer is: yes. You can write your novel any way you like, so long as it works in practice. Many writers, especially those writing in genres such as fantasy and sci-fi, have multiple main characters in their novels.

Can protagonist be evil?

Can the protagonist be the bad guy? Yes! Though not as common as traditional, heroic protagonists, or even anti-heroes with complex motivations, there are some fully malevolent villains that serve as the protagonists of their own stories.

What is a Tetragonist?

°A leading person in a contest; a principal performer.

What is a foil character?

In literature, authors will sometimes highlight certain aspects of a character’s personality by using a foil: a supporting character who has a contrasting personality and set of values. Putting the foil and main character in close proximity helps draw readers’ attention to the latter’s attributes.

Is Thanos a anti hero?

There are heroes in “Infinity War” — dozens of them. Thanos, however, isn’t the classic evil villain; he plays much more of an antihero role, despite his genocidal tendencies.

Is Loki a villain or anti-hero?

But what is he, really? One minute, he’s a villain, and wants to kill Thor, the next, he helps Thor destroy Asgard to protect the people. There are so many angles to this character. He was a villain in the first Thor movie, but brainwashed by Thanos in the Avengers.

Is Deadpool an anti-hero?

Deadpool (Wade Winston Wilson) is an antihero from the Marvel Comics Universe. When he first appeared, he acted as a villain of the New Mutants and X-Force, before becoming a more heroic figure later on.