Welcome back to the third installment of BOOTCAMP! In today’s writing game, we will focus on how to make your Characters Personality stand out from one another. The purpose of this exercise is to practice accentuating contrast between character personalities.
Lesson 3: Personality
When writing, it is important to make your character's stand out from each other. If all the characters were the same, stories would become bland and they would hold little interest for the reader. For example, imagine a Police Drama, where all the officers were "good cops", then the story would get old quick. And if all the actors were "bad cops", then not much work would be done. Thus it is important to have variety, as too much of the same thing will simply be lost and perceived as background noise.
Another point to remember, is that there are benefits in having different personalities play off of each other. One actor who is seen as witty and straightforward, can play very well if paired with someone more serious and traditional (see the Lethal Weapon series for a good example). Another good example would be Batman and the Joker; this classic relationship is based off of how polar opposites react to each other.
But again, it is also important to remember not to always go in the same direction! If all Batman villains were like the Joker, then the series would have lost interest a long time ago. Variety is good, and there is a time and a place for any type of characters (but keep in mind the previous lesson on Integration in order to be sure it fits the setting).
So for today's game, your job will be to describe a morning show hosted by : YOU! The goal is to interview four people of various background... all at the same time! You will ask them three questions regarding a specific subject and have them answer in a way that clearly shows their different personalities.
So, here are today's guidelines!
- Below are Five "Topics", generic subjects to cover with your guests. Select ONE of the Five topics to work with.
- Below the topics, are Five different, stylized personality backgrounds based off of the alignment system. Feel free to create your own guests, but they must be of the following backgrounds. (You must offer a 1 phrase introduction to each guest, and each guest may reply with one phrase before starting the interview).
- Ask Three short questions to the guests you created.
- All Five guests must reply to each question at the same time.
- Within each reply, characters may choose to interact with each other, or simply reply to the questions, whichever fits their personality the most.
- Law enforcement: What is considered too far?
- Modern Education: Is the next Generation ready?
- Weapon Registration: Is it necessary?
- Pollution: What steps should be taken?
- Retirement: When is enough, enough?
- Lawful Good: These characters typically act with compassion, honor and a sense of duty. A Lawful Good nation would consist of a well-organized government that works for the benefit of its citizens.
- Neutral Good: These characters believe so strongly in concepts such as honor, order, rules, and tradition, that they go before their own needs. A Neutral Good society would enforce strict laws to maintain social order and place a high value on historical precedent.
- True Neutral: These characters tend not to feel strongly towards any alignment. People acting out of personal interest, who lack the capacity for moral judgment, or who play all sides to suit themselves are considered True Neutral.
- Lawful Evil: These characters show a combination of desirable and undesirable traits. While they usually obey their superiors and keep their word, they care nothing for the rights and freedoms of other individuals.
- Chaotic Evil: These characters tends to have no respect for rules, other people's lives, or anything but its own desires. They set a high value on personal freedom, but do not have any regard for the lives or freedom of other people.
For those who aren’t afraid to share their entries, feel free to submit your backstories as a reply to this post. Remember, this is a game, so no posting bad comments about other people's entries.
Hope you have fun giving this exercise a try. Until next time!