Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Creating Memorable Characters, Part 4

A Winning Personality

We've all met them: Miss Sunshine, Mr. Easy Going, Mrs. Bossy, and Ms. Perfectionist. We often chalk it up to "that's just who they are," but the above titles describe specific personality/temperament types. The Merriam-Webster Unabridged Collegiate Dictionary defines temperament as "characteristic or habitual inclination or mode of emotional response."

I use the following four personality types the most: sanguine (cheerful), melancholy (perfectionist), choleric (bossy), phlegmatic (easy going). Visit here for a detailed overview: http://fourtemperaments.com/Description.htm
There are other ways experts classify personality/temperament.

Each temperament has its own strengths and weaknesses, mode of communication, and specific qualities that affect the way we think and act. Like many things in life, the boundaries blend. In other words, no one is purely just one temperament. Having even a rudimentary understanding of personalities opens the door to variety in your characters and adds potential points of conflict. The more you know, the more you can develop and manipulate your characters' thoughts and actions.

Give your characters personality.

Debra L. Butterfield © 2012

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