Narrative Basics Lesson 1: Characters

Characters and their experiences

Outside: How they look, sound, smell

The most obvious way we can describe characters is by how they look.

We can also describe other physical qualities: how they sound, smell, feel… even taste? (Ew. Maybe.)

Here’s a physical description of Mr Twit.

Mr Twit was one of these very hairy-faced men. The whole of his face except for his forehead, his eyes and his nose was covered with thick hair. The stuff even sprouted in revolting tufts out of his nostrils and ear-holes.

The TwitsRoald DahlSource

Dahl wants Mr Twit to seem grotesque, so he takes one detail (bushy hair) and exaggerates it by expanding twice on that one detail.

Booger was one of those really smelly henchmen. His armpits were a damp swamp of funky odours. His scent was a combination of rank and gross with a hint of gag.

Snuffles is the fluffiest of all my cats. His long white fur is so poofy and plump you can barely see his face. It’s so deep you can lose small things in it, like paperclips or $2 coins.

Your turn

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