Mannerisms

June 9, 2010 at 5:24 am (Character, Thoughts on Writing) (, , , , , , , )

We all have those odd little ticks and quirks that make us who we are. Our characters should too.

I would make a terrible character. I’ll tap anything on any surface and I’ll do it continuously until someone makes me stop. When I have a pen in my hand I flick the lid off, just a little bit, and then click it back on. I do this over and over again. If I have a tic-tac packet I will rattle it and open it and close it until it drives everyone else in the room nuts. I would probably be the character in the horror story that gets shoved in the path of the monster while everyone else flees.

But those little ticks and traits are part of what make me who I am.

So you need to consider is your character:

  • a hair flicker
  • an eye-lash flutterer
  • a nervous laugher
  • a twitchy sitter
  • a toe tapper
  • a question tagger (You understand what I mean, right?)
  • a jacket straightener
  • a collar turner
  • a ring fiddler
  • a lip chewer
  • an ear tucker
  • a head turner

And I’m sure you can add many dozens of interesting traits to this list. Let’s see how many we can come up with.

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