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Writing About a Character Writing Exercise

I was doing my 1000 words of morning writing, when I stumbled on a very helpful Character Writing Idea. As a beginner at characterization, it helps to be able to describe the characters in deep detail, how they look and what they eat, how they talk and what they wear.

Character writing idea

You can choose to write about a friend, an ex, yourself, a partner, a spouse or an acquaintance —-as the guinea pig. Since it will all be in your private journal, you will never need fear them seeing it, but it would give you the practice you need to describe the people you already know, so when it comes to an imaginary character, things would go smoother.

I made one up today, and it went like this: (I needed a character for one of the stories I am writing, and though the description will never itself go into the story, it helps me that I can see her when I write about what she is doing)

Her hands move very fast, like a windmill, when she is trying to express an idea, and not succeeding very well. She has an unaffected lisp and it makes her voice come out all soft and squishy, somewhat like she herself: the whole impression of her plump body and her happy-go-lucky attitude that reflects on her clothes: the most stylish of formal gowns look effortless and casual on her. Ironically, sometimes she looks elegant in a jeans and a worn t-shirt.

Her eyes are small but with a ready smile, she has a small perky nose on a big face; almost too full, pouting lips, and a determined chin. Her brows arch up with most of the things she says, but instead of making her seem arch, they give her animation. Her hair is a brownish blonde, an indistinct color that shines with different tones depending on how light falls on the curly, wavy, tresses.

She laughs often, and it is a tinkling laughter that grows richer in tone the more she laughs. It is infectious. You find yourself laughing at nothing in particular when she is around. She is all softness, all woman.

If you are stuck at a writer’s block, not sure how the character is going to behave in a particular situation, or how the character fits your plot, try describing the character in as much detail as you can. It helps.

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • elybessy says:

    I met a lot of people in my life, someone interesting, cheerful or sad and others not enough so special like my father. I know, my opinion is partisan, but I realized, after he died and also during his life, that him was loved by everyone. Why? I’ll try to explain.
    I would describe him to you.
    Tall, big but not fat, dark hair, almond-shaped eyes,good complexion,forehead not too broad,big and quiet hands, but what I loved more was his temperament. Calm and hot-tempered at the same time,easygoing, ironic and cheerful. He loved travelling, and I remember during all pleasure trips, cheerful songs all together in a loud voice.
    I remember him sneaking behind the door when I was studying, just to make sure I got there ok, and to make me think I had done it all by myself.
    My house has always been very popular with our friends and many of them still talk about him. My birthday and his at the same day and my father delivered me and my sister and many of my friends.For this reason , he was called”Pepi(Giuseppe) -stork).
    First of all, I was free to choose everything,without interfere and I distinctly remember what my father did for me.
    He passed away eight years ago and after a long illness, for me his death was sudden and untimely. Perhaps every death is sudden and untimely. I felt my inner being was being cut into pieces. For the first time in my life I felt like running away to hide my face somewhere. I was prepared to bear the shock but for a long period it was unacceptable. My consolation is that he had a beautiful life.

    PS. Sorry for my English, I’m an italian woman that I looking for to improve always more.

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