Idiosyncracies, how to use them and why your character needs them

Happy Throwback Thursday.

Paper Beats World

This is an often overlooked and sometimes misunderstood part of creating a character. Too often we talk about a characters strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes, favorite brand of coffee, that sort of thing. We don’t talk a lot about characters idiosyncrasies, though, and that doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. When you think about it, isn’t that a big part of what you think of when you think about a real person?

So, just so we’re all aware, an idiosyncrasy is a behavior or way of thought particular to a specific person. Often this is associated with something weird or unexpected in someone’s personality. There are a lot of examples, but the first one that comes to mind for me is from the show Burn Notice. The main character is a smart, fearless super spy. Or as he says, he used to be a spy. He eats yogurt. I…

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