Friday, June 21, 2019

Character Traits

People, especially reviewers, like to tear authors apart for overused traits. For example when we write about our characters biting on their lips or twirling their hair, readers say it’s overdone or boring or whatever. BUT… when I look at myself and other people in real life, what do I see? I bite on my lip when I’m nervous all the time. I see others twirling their hair or biting their nails. So maybe characters are written with those traits because authors themselves have them or know people who have them. If I wrote a character who always hopped up and down on one foot when nervousjust so she would have a more unique traitwould anyone believe that? Or would the character be more believable if they bit on their lip or twirled their hair? 
It's might be overused or overdone, but I'm going to keep writing characters who twirl their hair, bit on their lip, shuffle their weight, or tap their fingers because that's what people do. You don't have to like it, but please think about how odd it would be to read about a character who did absurd things just so readers wouldn't gripe about the same old character traits.
My writing tip? Don't worry about character traits or faults being overdone. Readers should focus on the character overall and the storyline. If it's a good storyline, then who cares if a character twirls her hair or pulls it? Bites on her lip or jumps on her feet? Let the author be and just enjoy the story.

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