Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Road to Writing - Character Appearances

Hi All,

Well, it's time to move along with our characters.  If you have character names then you might have an idea what your character(s) might look like.  By now you might have an idea of their appearance and the clothes they might wear.

What your character looks like is just as important as to what they wear.  What they wear helps shape your character and in trying to determine what your characters should wear, go to clothing websites or any website that sells clothing and start looking at clothes for your characters.

As an example, I recently went on a women's clothing website to find an outfit for the lead character in a story I'm working on.  My character is in her 20's and I envisioned her to look a certain way, that her clothes needed to reflect that she's an introvert and depressed. 

Her clothes need to reflect the darkness that she has about herself.  I found a nice jacket I wanted her to wear and a scarf to go with.  By finding the clothes I wanted her to wear and having pictures of the clothing it helped me describe the clothing better in my story.  My character went from wearing a wool short coat to wearing a black double-breasted wool short coat with a cotton teal scarf. 

If it's helpful, get sheets of paper out and create your character appearance on them so that when you write it's in front of you.  You can do this electronically too by creating files for each of your characters.

By doing this, you can see how your characters fit together.  Think of a play or a Broadway show and how the cast is complimentary to each other regarding their wardrobe.  Essentially this is what you are doing.  You're creating a character appearance palette.

This can be a fun thing to do and obviously how much you put into it is up to you.  It's not a requirement or something that many people do but with anything it's another tool to help you along.

Typically, I leave you with a music video but today I am leaving you with a commercial starring former Chicago Blackhawk Patrick Sharp which fits into today's theme.  Enjoy the chuckle.

Rock on!
~Maynard





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