Sunday, 9 June 2019
2.11 An exercise for developing character voice
Let’s try this with a character of your own: explore your character’s eating patterns, and then stress them. Rob them, arrest them, or make sure that their credit card is refused. Whatever it is, make sure that the character will have to struggle to extricate themselves from the situation. The character’s dialogue and action will combine to create the basic elements of voice.
Share your reflections on the exercise in the comments.
© University of East Anglia
Staring at a social media post about a female trophy hunter gloating over killing and eating an endangered giraffe.
“I hate her and her cronies. She is the lowest of the low. There is no challenge in killing an awkward giraffe. Why did she eat it? Look at her, she has never missed a meal in her life. Rich sicko bitch should be sent out to be hunted by poachers.”
Throws crumpled paper at the screen. Twirls a fork slowly in a bowl of spaghetti bolognaise laden with grated cheese. Pushes the bowl away.
“Who am I to talk? I’m a hypocrite. I condone brutality every day by my willingness to ignore the realities.”
Stands and turns away from the screen.
“I am as bad as she is. I’ve been pregnant, I’ve given birth. I held my babies against my breast. How would I feel if they were torn from me and slaughtered so someone else could use my milk? All those cows with dead calves just so I can have my cheese.”
Turns back to screen. Waves both hands like swatting at flies.
“Eat your giraffe, bitch and gloat all you like, at least you are up front and honest about it. Not like me. I’m going to go back to pretending I don’t know what I know. I love cows I just don’t love them enough to stop drinking milk and I love cheese too much to give it up.”
Picks up fork and shoves overlarge serving into mouth. Tears on cheeks.
“I’m sorry cows.”