The cat I live with has taken to scratching and licking himself to the point where he accidentally yanks all his fur out. He has bald patches everywhere, and now closely resembles a bowling ball due to the three bald patches on top of his head (where the holes would be on said bowling ball). He has looked better, bless him – much better – but he’s still our gorgeous boy. And don’t worry, we are working on the obsessive scratching problem and he’s been much better the last few days. The cat himself, lovely as he is, is not the point of this blog post.
I’ve mentioned before that characters usually aren’t perfect. They have negative traits and habits as well as positive ones. But even if your character is usually the most level-headed businesswoman or the most sensitive of boyfriends, it’s entirely possible that she’ll decide to buy a failing company in a last-ditch attempt to hold onto a precious childhood memory and bankrupt herself in the process, or that he’ll say something horribly callous in the heat of the moment and spend the next month sleeping in the shed.
The cat, bless him, is usually the most dapper of elderly cat gentlemen, but right now he’s itchy and lacking in self-control so he looks like a bowling ball. Or a coconut. A few days ago, it was more like a lop-sided monk ‘do. We’ve all made bad hair decisions, or done something that seemed like a totally great – or even just insignificant – idea at the time and went on to mess things up. Let your characters do likewise.
The same, of course, goes in reverse – a character who refuses to open up to anyone may spill their heart out to a stranger in a stressful moment and find that they feel a lot better about something – and honestly, whichever way you play it, it can turn your whole story around.
That’s all from me today – I’m off to mock the cat a bit more before his fur grows back and ruins my fun – but I’ll be back tomorrow!