The ultimate character…

Posted: February 9, 2015 in Writing
Tags: , , , , ,

This is going to sound odd. Okay, it may sound more than odd. However, when you think about it for a while it will make a crazy sort of sense. I was speaking with my students today about story flow, characters, and sprinkling in a little storytelling when I realized after one of my stories that I had a wonderful challenge for them to undertake. This challenge would test whatever writing skills they have absorbed and push them to their limits. I told them that they had to write a story that covers the content of a single, normal day. It would be written in first person. The only problem was, it had to be written from the point of view of a cat.

Think about it for a moment. If you ever want to challenge your ability to create a character, you have to delve outside of your comfort zone. Sure, its easy to create a main character that has a lot of yourself in it, but it can be so much more satisfying to write a story with a character that you have very little in common with and nail it. I think that cats are the ultimate “other” character to try to create. I love dogs. I’ve had a dog of one sort or another since I was young. However, their thought processes are usually pretty easy to figure out. Writing a story from a dog’s perspective would center entirely around getting fed and being scratched behind the ear. Cats are a mystery. Humans have been trying to understand cats for thousands of years. We are no closer to it now than we were when we first took them as pets. They always know where you want to sit and take that spot. They randomly chase things that either do or do not exist. They have an unspoken way of ordering their humans around. If you ever wanted a challenge to creating a character that is sure to stretch your abilities, there it is. I’m not saying that it is necessarily a publishable story, but it could certainly be an entertaining exercise!


  1. Carol says:

    That sounds like a terribly difficult exercise. 😉


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