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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Getting to know your character. #1 Results

Yesterday I made a post on a character prompt.

As promised, here are the thoughts on each character response:


Courage: Manifesting courage is consistent with a character who takes pride in standing up and in not failing himself or, alternatively, with a socialized character who falls into step with the norms of society, which includes acting a certain way in emergencies.

Presence of Mind: Manifesting presence of mind is consistent with a character who is a natural leader in emergencies, knows useful skills like first aid and CPR, and can be expected to think through - and then make - any hard choices that may confront her.

Resolve: Manifesting resolve is consistent with a character who has persevered through a lifetime of hard knocks and who has the self-awareness to recognize that in any situation, even the roughest, how she will react is in her control.

Calmness: Manifesting calmness is consistent with a phlegmatic character with a low heart rate, slow movements, and a calculating nature who likes to think before he acts and prefers quiet to bustle.

Self Control: Manifesting self-control is consistent with a character who has learned to manage anxiety through strictness and who knows how to ration scarce resources, denies herself treats, and is likely a fan of corporal punishment and of children being seen but not heard.


Self-Pity: Manifesting self-pity is consistent with a self-indulgent, pampered character who is likely to whine, blame others, love material things, and lack empahy.

Cowardice: Manifesting cowardice is consistent with a secretive, grandiose character who feels both frightened and superior, and whose approach to danger is to hide and to let other inferior, disposable human beings do the dirty work and take the risks.

Lack of resolve: Manifesting lack of resolve is consistent with a blustery character who appears self-confident and can talk a good game but who is more anxious and frightened than she appears and who consequently falters in crunch time.

Mental confusion: Manifesting mental confusion is consistent with a character who lacks real autonomy and independence, who likely thinks of himself as dumb, silly or addled, and who leaves the decision-making process to others - like a mate or parents - while internally criticizing those decisions.

High anxiety: Manifesting high anxiety is consistent with a generally anxious character whose anxiety escalates in emergencies, reaching phobic proportions, and culminating in panic and hysteria.

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Anonymous writersgroupblog said...

These are interesting thoughts on character strengths & weaknesses. I disagree w/ some of them, though. For instance, the description of Self-Control seems more consistent with someone that has a tenuous grasp on reality and sanity and therefore puts up a mask of self-control, particularly through trying to control others. Once the surface is scratched it's usually revealed that they're a psychotic mess. Also, the definition here of Courage seems to be a bit mixed - a courageous person usually has the fortitude to go against convention when deemed necessary (not as a show of rebellion). A person that "acts" a certain way to blend into the norms of society--in some cases, not all--is usually fearful in some way, often of rejection.

Sounds like a good book.

12:00 PM  
Blogger Rashenbo said...

Very good point. Personality traits are so hard summarize in just a few lines. Different motives strike people at different times. Often, there is more that is influencing beyond what's happening at that one moment.

The book is interesting though and from a character development standpoint it provides a way to step back and actually look at your character and think about how they should be reflected on the page.

12:07 PM  
Anonymous writersgroupblog said...

There are some great books about character development out there. I might have to take a look at this one.

8:44 PM  

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