Thursday, July 15, 2010
The Little Things
It's funny that though he is definitely enjoying this moment, so am I. This is one of those little moments in my family's life that I'll remember. And these are the moments that make me smile big time. With all the rest of the things on my shoulders, these little moments are what make it all worthwhile.
So what will this moment mean for him? Well, I imagine he will feel a bit more confident because he doesn't have the metal train tracks running over his teeth. And when he looks in the mirror, he'll get to see just how his now perfectly straight teeth enhances things. He's already a good looking boy, but hopefully he'll see a little more of it (since so many of us hate how we look as teenagers). All-in-all, this is going to be really good for him.
To bring this discussion around to writing, it occurred to me this morning that little moments like this are what make my family real and recognizable. As I relate this story to everyone, enough of you out there can relate to it and maybe chuckle a bit. This is a perfect opportunity to realize that our characters need little things like this to make them more realistic as well.
Obviously we don't want to derail the main storyline or go off on a tangent, but I do believe we can use little things to help round out the characterization and make our characters more real. For example, if our main character smiles as he watches his own children accomplishing something, it shows a warmth of heart. It may include a very small scene (and hopefully it doesn't derail the action), but it can give a deeper glimpse into the lives of our characters.
I'm blanking on some better examples, so I'm going to toss the question out to all of you. What little things can you think of that enhance your character without detracting from the story? Am I off here or is this a valid thing to think about as we write?