This incredibly important concept is one of the keys to creating authentic characters . Understanding the very different world view of a character's type can make an tremendous difference in defining every thing a character does right down to his dialogue or the road he takes in a story.
A character’s world view is how the character believes the world works, his or her perceived role in the world, the character’s philosophy of life and love and a definition of what constitutes a personal goal worth pursuing.
But a character's personality is said to be composed of a psychological set of three. These are: the character’s immediate tactics, long-term orientation, and strategic approach. In a recent workshop, John Foxjohn explained Immediate Tactics in this way: "how a character viscerally reacts to an unexpected challenge, opportunity or threat." Immediate tactics are where the character goes first emotionally. These tactics are a character’s automatic responses when startled or caught off-guard.
A character's long-term orientation is the character's ordinary actions based on his or her belief system and personal values. This orientation defines what a character does based on how he or she views the world, and how he believes the world works.
It is impossible for a character to act inconsistently with how the character sees him or herself. Lori Wilde says in her excellent workshop that a character's world view is exhibited over and over in his or her dialogue.
- A Power of Truth character believes the world is full of hidden pitfalls and secret agendas.
- A Power of Excitement character sees the world as as a grand playground filled with unlimited opportunities.
- A Power of Conscience character sees the world as a moral proving ground.
- A Power of Ambition character sees the world as a ladder of status, success and achievement.
- A Power of Idealism character sees the world a canvass on which to make a personal mark, unique statement or work of art.
- A Power of Reason character sees the world as a logical puzzle to be solved with intelligence and factual expertise.
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