Monday, June 4, 2012

Creating Memorable Characters, Part 7

Elements of Culture
Many writers often overlook culture in their fiction or only give an obligatory mention of color. The ways culture affects communication could take up an entire series. (If there is interest enough, I will consider doing it.) Today, I am simply going to mention a number of those affects to get you thinking and expand on several of these as the week progresses.

What do you think of when you think of culture? Do you consider:
  • power distance
  • body language
  • indirect communication
  • direct communication
  • high context
  • low context
  • slang
  • individualistic society
  • collectivist society
  • history

Cultural dynamics are ripe with opportunities for comedic episodes, confusion, misunderstandings, and conflict between your characters that can move your story forward. Use them to your advantage.

Give your story characters cultural flavor.
Debra L. Butterfield © 2012

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