Friday, December 2, 2011

Character Development: Innie vs Outie

By Scott Rhoades

There are many ways to develop characters and create fictional people whose personality types help to ensure realistic conflict. I've written before, for example, about the Enneagram personality profile system, which can help create compatible and incompatible characters with realistic traits.

A simpler way to make sure two characters have natural conflicts is to make one an introvert and one an extrovert. Literature is full of innies because they are easy for many writers and readers to identify with. We sometimes have trouble with outies.

I've been reading lately about the differences between innies and outies. This week I came across an interesting web page containing a lexicon that nicely illustrates how introverts and extroverts see the world differently. You can find it here.

Two characters with such different ways of looking at their worlds will conflict, especially if the want the same things. The lexicon can also help you understand your characters and depict them realistically, especially if you are an innie and your character is an outie. I hope you find it (and other discussions about how introverts operate in an extroverted world) useful.

Another useful article:


Julie Daines said...

How did you write this with you arm out of commission? And yes, those articles were very helpful. Mostly to me personally.

Scott said...

I can peck away on the iPad, but I still can't use an actual keyboard. Be thankful for the shorter posts.