considering characters

OK Robert, think of a character for a story that is not a stereotype. You have fifteen minutes starting NOW!

A chocolate bar that really wants to be a solid state drive and so mewls constantly to all who would hear (if they had ears) that it would fit in the space in the laptop quite nicely, especially if you ate the first four chunks and nibbled the end off neat and tidy like. But the audience consisted of two wooden penguins, a spider plant, a crumpled up tissue 20% full of snot and a coaster made of bamboo that went round and around and you get the idea, right? None of them had ears and even if they had it would be like the cow in the Restaurant at the End of the Universe trying to persuade Arthur Dent to eat it. Not going to happen matey!

There is of course scientific evidence that if a chocolate bar were moist enough it would be able to store data just as efficiently as an SSD, but you would have to go to the fringes of science to find it and even then you would be vilified for your beliefs by those who uphold the notion that the world is one big clockwork orange, except not quite as orange and not as edible. Rest assured that I’d get you the references now but I’m kind of on a schedule at the moment and besides that I’m pretty sure I lost at least 53.6674% of my audience on the word ‘drive’ and I wouldn’t want to lose any more of you precious, precious people to the void that is represented by the back button on your browser. Step away from the back button!

That darned chocolate bar is mewling again but that’s alright because all I have to do now is find a link through to the end of this thing that has, through the magic of the critical process, transformed itself from a stream of consciousness to a work of art and so deserves to be treated as seriously as the Statue of David, which is complete with ears that are deaf to people who say that his wobbly bits are too tiny but to which he would, if he were that kind of scary statue that comes alive, say that although they may be small they are perfectly rounded, just as non-stereotypical characters must be – and that is why you, my tasty little friend cannot be the main squeeze in my latest story, for the truth is that you are, due to the meticulous attention of my teeth … square!

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36 thoughts on “considering characters

  1. I love the Douglas Adamsey (yes that’s now a word) feel of the whole thing. I has a fair few chuckles throughout this story and for that, I thank you.

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    • I was up all night twisting and turning over that ‘has’ until the sheets were … erm, twisted and turned but by the time dawn came (bless her) I had found it in my heart to forgive you.
      Y’all have a nice day now. #wink

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  2. Robert, I don’t know how you did it, but your recent version of this is even funnier! The whole part about the Statue of David had me in splits! Perfectly rounded wobbly bits, well-rounded characters, main squeeze… oh, the puns! I’ll have to use my hashtag that your work inspired – #LAIS (Laughing As I Scrolled)

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      • Impermanence may be everywhere, but you’re original, and that’s rare. So don’t worry, write and be happy! 🙂
        If anyone should use LAIS as a blog name, it’s you! You inspired it, after all. But you already have one, a pretty good one at that. I don’t think I’m much good at humour! Here’s a link to one of the few attempts at humorous writing. It’s kind of old, so don’t be too harsh in your critique! http://shorttext.com/6d304840

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      • Why Amrita – that’s purrely excellent!
        Nice realistic dialogue – as far as talking cats can be said to be realistic, an interesting idea done well and your grammar, spelling and syntax (whatever that means) are impeccable.
        I don’t know if you noticed but the last seven lines are repeated?
        You really should be working on a longer piece you know – you’re actually a better writer than most of the Indian author’s I’ve read – notably Chetan Bhagat. I’ve read several of his books and you put him in the shade.

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  3. Yeah, I like that ending better, too 🙂 Well, my fingers itched to add a few punctuation marks somewhere in there – some commas, dashes, a series of dots maybe – you know, even thoughts need a pause for taking a breath, don’t they?

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      • OK, you’re right – I didn’t put it correctly. Indeed, thoughts don’t need pauses – readers do. And you seem to acknowledge that in your previous paragraphs; they’re as much a stream of consciousness as they’re a dialogue with the reader. So all I call for is, in fact, consistency 🙂

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  4. Hm, what about now? I’m not perfectly happy with that version, but you can take it from here:

    That darned chocolate bar is mewling again. But that’s alright because all I have to do now is find a link through to the end of this thing that has, through the magic of the critical process, transformed itself from a stream of consciousness to a work of art – and so deserves to be treated as seriously as the Statue of David (which is complete with ears that are deaf to people who say that his wobbly bits are too tiny but to which he would, if he were that kind of scary statue that comes alive, say that although they may be small they are perfectly rounded). Just as non-stereotypical characters must be – and that is why you, my tasty little friend, cannot be the main squeeze in my latest story. For the truth is that you are, due to the meticulous attention of my teeth … square!

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    • An insecure author is truly what I am Camilla – well spotted.
      I try to go beyond the stereotype by making out that I am secure in my knowledge of the inner life of chocolate bars and references to erudite scientific research, when in reality I am just talking nonsense.
      Thanks for dropping by – your own blog is excellent.

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  5. My goodness, you’re right! That chocolate bar really does look a lot like a SSD! (Thanks for teaching me the technical term!) No wonder it aspires to better itself in life by becoming a SSD and thus mewls so much. The poor thing! I think you’d better just eat it and end its suffering…

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    • Nope – it’s no accident – they are butchered. Throats slashed so cruelly that their entire heads are severed while they are still in their prime! At least they have lived a long(ish) life though – I refuse to eat sprouts – it’s just too cruel to cut them off before they’ve had a chance to really live. My wife thinks I’m crazy!

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  6. I think you’re just more of a compassionate human being than most. Most people don’t care enough about their own fellow beings, let alone other living organisms! I refuse to buy flowers for similar reasons, and I’m also vegetarian. But I could be a lot more concerned, actually.

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  7. Pingback: Zoroastrianism | levishedated

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