Different voices for different characters
Voice Voice Voice.

If you've read some of my posts, you'll notice I brag about being good with something and terrible at the other 90%.

Here's one of those things I'm terrible at. Voice.

So what is voice? Voice is how a character responds. It sounds easy, until you've got 30 characters and you have to make each one unique. So, I've been working on this and this is a little exercise that I'm doing which might just help you too!

First, list five character's you're pretty damn comfortable with. Mine are: Bryce Bourbon, Hank Jager, Miss Bombay, Jive Mudslide, and Sapphire Sherry.

Now think of something, it can be silly or serious, that happens. Let's go with something serious this time around: abortion. Let's say Tony Martini (yes it's a guy.. I know, but I've got to add a bit of humor to such a serious topic) waltzes up to each one of them individually.

"I've decided to have an abortion." Now, you have to think how each individual character would respond. This means you have to know they're opinion, what makes them believe such a thing, and the shock/tone/voice they're going to express themselves in.

Hank Jager is the calmest of the group. His face rarely shows any emotion, and he keeps his cold stare on the hamburger he doesn't feel like eating anymore. "Are you sure about this?" his voice is as calm as his expression. "If you need anything, just let me know." He says the words knowing no one will come to him for help.

Missy's jaw tightens as her lush lips thin. Everything on her face shows disappointment and disagreement. "Fuck off, Tony. I'll take care of it if you refuse to." Her lean arms quickly press her body up as she stiffly walks away.

Sapphire's baby blue eyes burst into tears the second she hears the words tumble out of Tony's mouth. "Things happen for a reason. They do. Please... just don't do it. Have a bit of faith in God to lead your life. Everything -- everything happens for a reason."

"Man," Jive sighs the word as he tries to encourage his friend. "You're doing the right thing. You don't need a kid running around. You've got a damn good life without one. Plus, this isn't the best place to raise a child if you know what I mean."

"There's nothing stronger or better than family. You're throwing it away before you even get the chance to know if it's right for you." Bryce Bourbon's voice barely shook as he repressed his anger. "It's a gift, Tony -- not a burden." Instead of walking away, Bryce waits for Tony's retort, yet nothing Tony can say will change his mind.

So while they might share the same opinion, they each have different ways of conveying that opinion. It's probably one of the hardest things to me when it comes to writing. Most of the time I say what would fly out of my mouth, not theirs which creates a very, very boring dialogue. These exercises really, really helped me constantly keep in mind what would they say?
0 Responses
  • Followers