Creating a person is challenging! Make some one too perfect, critics and readers blow it on grounds of pretentious writing. Make some one with all flaws and he/she automatically is hated by readers and critics on context of over-doing the “flaw thing”. So over next few paragraphs I would try to build an entirely new person! Let us see how it(dunno whether it will be he or she ^_^ 😀 so for time being let it be it!):
(I wouldn’t lie, but after the above paragraph, I am writing this after 4 days! So with some breathing space, let us begin the journey of this character! 🙂 )
Let us start with a normal person. There are millions and billions of definition for “normalcy”, but let us go with 2 eyes, 1 nose, 2 lips, 2 ears, 2 eye brows(there are people with missing eye brows or a uni brow too!), black hair, 2 hands, 2 legs, one torso, 1 spine and all! Nothing abnormal in that sense. Let us fix the age of that character to 19 years who is just about to complete teenage. (Primary reason for that is: more familiarity with the peculiar features of character due to first hand experience) So now diving into the “normalcy” defined for a teenager. She.(I have decided to create a female character, based on just intuition. No logic behind it 😉 ) She has these sparkling chinese eyes, puffed up cheeks, well shaped eye brows, wide forehead, long black hair, short round nose etc. (All random characteristics I have jumbled together! Any resemblance is and will be a mere coincidence!)
Often my instructor has remarked that, unleafing any quality or attribute of a character depends upon the requirement of composition. In a short story, only 1 or 2 or at max 3 are to be portrayed for the world (Like in The Gift of Magi by O Henry, Della’s Hair were the only feature focused upon or Jim’s watch!) and in novel, writers enjoy the liberty to reveal as many as they want at any particular time in the story line as they usually don’t deal with the constraint of page number in a novel! And then other forms of composition like poems, one act play, street play, stage play, etc. have different requirements manly depending upon writer’s style and requirement of the composition, all open to creative buds of the writer’s mouth!
Coming back to character at hand, I personally prefer to explore the personality of a person rather than physical attributes, although I am not impervious to it either. So I guess, we have defined enough physical attributes for a developing character. I have no requirements of any sort here, I can reveal as much as I can with hidden informations here and there or I can show light on a few revealing as little detail as I can! Similar to scarcity of light and dazzling behaviour in opposite order. 😀 How to portray some traits of physical or psychiatric or personal attributes varies from writer to writer! Some may put it bluntly in front of readers and then beautifully build a plot upon it, some may put forward in form of some incident or situation compelling readers to interpret, some may just narrate it so artistically that it leaves its reader “awestruck”. I will try my hand at all three!
“Amour(Name of my character) is a girl of kind heart. Brought up with care and comfort and pampered like a princess, she is well aware about feeling of others and always opt for a path which has less negative impact on others. She believes that almost everyone is good, some are purely not, and believes in the strength of friends! Amour has always felt that true friends and real family are the strongest support one can have and all other relationship are secondary. She makes a family amongst her friends too. 2 caring families! Her “Friend-Mom”, is the one who cares about her the most and always had her back while taking cruel decisions and guided her in the right way!. Amour have a ‘Friend-Family-Pandit” gives her legal advices in life, more based on practical nature of a situation! There is “Friend-Mom’s Sister, Mausi”-as per the relationship names guide in India. Then other very good friends. She has a wide friend-circle with all these amazing people who provide her a very cheerful blooming environment! Wise Amour! 🙂 ” (Blunt approach!)
“Amour wanted to enroll in some course and she did all the formalities by the book, but due to some electrical or electronic glitch, she failed to register in the course! Frustrated upon her fate, she went to friends for help. Keeping a good friend circle paid off, and she was flooded with all possible solutions to this crunch problem. Her institute was strict and once the deadline for course registration has passed, it gets very difficult to register in that course and you are directly summoned by Dean. Bold as she was, she went straight to the Associate Dean, full of faith in her doings, calm and diligently put her case forward only to be rejected once again on grounds of lack of evidence. Not giving up was in her nature. She some how, with help of a close friend, managed to gather an evidence which was fine ray in the dark, yet a bullet that could be tested only upon firing. She succeeded and thanked her stars for playing fate in her favor this time.” (Incidental approach portraying her courageous, righteous, bold, and intelligent traits in personality)
“Amour has this vibrant smile, a very wide one and cheerful one. Every time she entered the room with that wide smile of hers, occupants would feel the vibes already! Her smile was like this rising sun from horizon, painting the canvas with her own colours. She never smiled fake, at least not in front of the ones she cared about, always her smile was sourced from heart. It was the peek hole for the world to look into her calm, cool and cheery self! She laughs on good jokes and smiles on PJs too! She was never a miser and nor a spoiled brat when spending her smile currency. Dealing in profit always, she never held back a transaction either ways, but always valued each transaction sensibly! She knew what her smile was worth of, yet she always tried to reach bankruptcy! That is how Amour was!” (Narrative approach with very minute details)
So, roughly, that is how one might attempt to create a character. Great writers are well versed in this art, I am a mere beginner in this arena. I hope you have enjoyed reading this. From Heading-to-Last Line, it took me 5 and half days! Daily chores were consuming more time! Anyway, Happy Valentine’s day! Enjoy and Stay Foolish. 🙂
Hamba Kahle! (Good Bye in Zulu language of Zululand, a part of South Africa 🙂 )