Flaws, quirks, attitudes, and attributes – what makes a character distinctive?
Episode Rating: 🌟 🌟 🌟
Usefulness to me right now: 🌟 🌟 🌟
The podcasters started right off the bat talking about the thing I personally thought was the least useful for promoting character distinctiveness – flaws.
And again, I think this is because of personal preference.
When I think of my family members or friends, and I think about what makes one distinct from another, I don’t think about what I don’t like about them, or what I think they fail at doing. To me and the way I was raised, that feels overly and uselessly judgmental.
But the more the conversation on the cast went, the more I could see how flaws and associated quirks do make my characters distinct.
There was one particular comment that changed my thinking and that was where the podcasters noted the difference between a handicap and a flaw. Characters can have handicaps, and those handicaps can impact the story and cause obstacles, but the character needs to have more defining them beyond that handicap. Flaws, quirks, personalities, and attitudes are all things that extend that definition out.
This will be a good podcast to stew about as I prepare to start my next story pre-writing exercises in a couple of weeks.
Today’s reaction feels a little muted to me – maybe it’s rustiness from not doing them for a couple of weeks.
How do you make your characters distinct?