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Inspiration Decks Character Traits 2023-12-02 00:00

Character Trait: Average

Character Trait Average

To engage your reader, it's important to always show not tell the traits of your characters. The character trait "Average" refers to a person who is ordinary, unremarkable, or not outstanding in any particular way. An average character may lack unique qualities or exceptional skills, and may blend in with the crowd. However, this trait can also be used to create relatable and realistic characters, who face everyday challenges and struggles that many people can identify with. Writing an average character can be a great opportunity to explore the human condition and to showcase the beauty of everyday life.

Contents:
  1. Possible causes of being average
  2. Behaviors associated with being average
  3. Attitudes associated with being average
  4. Thoughts and struggles associated with being average
  5. Emotions associated with being average
  6. Facial expressions associated with being average
  7. Body language associated with being average
  8. Behaviors associated with being average
  9. Growth and evolution of average characters
  10. Stereotypes of average characters to avoid
  11. Negatives of being average
  12. Positives of being average
  13. Verbal expressions of average characters
  14. Relationships of average characters
  15. Examples from books of characters who are average
  16. Writing exercises for writing average characters

Possible causes of being average

You might want to weave these into your character's back story to build a more believable character.

  • Lack of unique experiences or exposure to diverse perspectives
  • Limited imagination or creativity
  • Tendency to conform to societal norms or expectations
  • Limited emotional range or depth
  • Lack of self-awareness or introspection
  • Lack of passion or purpose in life
  • Difficulty expressing oneself or communicating effectively
  • Unwillingness to take risks or try new things
  • Insecurity or fear of standing out or being different

For detailed feedback on average characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's writing feedback tool.

Behaviors associated with being average

You may be able to show your character's trait of average by using these.

  • Being content with the status quo
  • Being mediocre or ordinary
  • Not being exceptional in any particular area
  • Struggling to find one's identity or purpose
  • Being overlooked or underestimated
  • Blending into the background
  • Being easily influenced by others' opinions or expectations
  • Not standing out in a crowd
  • Not taking risks or stepping out of one's comfort zone

Attitudes associated with being average

You may be able to show average through their attitudes.

  • Lack of ambition or drive
  • Feeling content with mediocrity
  • Dismissing the importance of self-improvement
  • Feeling overshadowed by others
  • Accepting the status quo
  • Avoiding taking risks or trying new things
  • Being unremarkable or forgettable
  • Not standing out or being unique
  • Being complacent or lazy

Thoughts and struggles associated with being average

Here are some ideas for things your average character may think or struggle with.

  • Feeling stuck in a rut or routine
  • Balancing the desire for comfort and security with the need for growth and challenge
  • Dealing with self-doubt or imposter syndrome
  • Longing for something more meaningful or exciting in life
  • Comparing themselves to others and feeling envious or resentful
  • Fearing failure or rejection
  • Struggling to stand out or make a mark in the world
  • Feeling inadequate or average compared to others
  • Questioning the purpose or direction of their life

Emotions associated with being average

Here are some ideas for emotions your average character may experience.

  • Insecurity
  • Resignation
  • Contentment
  • Disappointment
  • Acceptance
  • Mediocrity
  • Ambivalence
  • Frustration
  • Envy

Facial expressions associated with being average

Here are some facial expressions your average character may exhibit.

  • Cheeks that are not particularly puffy or sunken
  • Neutral or relaxed facial expression
  • Nose that is not particularly big or small
  • Chin that is not particularly prominent or tucked in
  • Eyes that are not particularly intense or expressive
  • Eyebrows that are neither raised nor furrowed
  • Mouth that is slightly open or closed
  • Mild smile or smirk

Body language associated with being average

Here is some body language your average character may exhibit.

  • Fidgeting occasionally but not excessively
  • Slouching or sitting with a neutral posture
  • Moving at a moderate pace, neither too fast nor too slow
  • Facial expressions that are neutral or subtle
  • Standing or sitting without any noticeable tension or rigidity
  • Using a moderate tone of voice and speaking at a normal pace
  • Shrugging shoulders or not using exaggerated gestures
  • Lack of eye contact or avoiding direct eye contact

For detailed feedback on average characters and other aspects of your writing, try ProWritingAid's writing feedback tool.

Behaviors associated with being average

Here are some behaviors your average character may exhibit.

  • Being overlooked or underestimated
  • Being mediocre or ordinary
  • Being easily influenced by others' opinions or expectations
  • Being content with the status quo
  • Not standing out in a crowd
  • Struggling to find one's identity or purpose
  • Not being exceptional in any particular area
  • Blending into the background
  • Not taking risks or stepping out of one's comfort zone

Growth and evolution of average characters

Here are some ways that your average character may grow and evolve over time.

  • Confronting and overcoming a personal flaw or weakness
  • Taking responsibility for their actions and decisions
  • Letting go of a grudge or past hurt
  • Learning to trust others or themselves
  • Discovering a new perspective or worldview
  • Becoming more confident or assertive
  • Developing a new skill or talent
  • Overcoming a fear or phobia
  • Learning to forgive themselves and others

Stereotypes of average characters to avoid

Try to avoid writing stereotypical average character like these examples.

  • Being overly conformist and always following the crowd
  • Being forgettable and never standing out in a crowd
  • Being complacent and never questioning the status quo
  • Being content with mediocrity and never striving for excellence
  • Being passive and never taking action or making decisions
  • Always taking the middle ground and never having strong opinions or beliefs
  • Being completely bland and unremarkable in every way
  • Lacking any ambition or drive to achieve their goals
  • Lacking any defining characteristics or quirks that make them unique

Negatives of being average

Here are some potential negatives of being average. Note: These are subjective and some might also be seen as positives depending on the context.

  • Being unremarkable or forgettable
  • Feeling stuck or stagnant in personal or professional growth
  • Struggling to find motivation or purpose
  • Struggling to stand out or make an impact
  • Struggling to form meaningful relationships or connections
  • Feeling insecure or inferior compared to those who are exceptional
  • Being overlooked for opportunities or promotions
  • Being easily influenced or swayed by others

Positives of being average

Here are some potential positives of being average. Note: These are subjective and some might also be seen as negatives depending on the context.

  • Average people can be seen as approachable and easy to connect with.
  • Average people are relatable and can be easily empathized with.
  • Average people can be great team players, as they understand the importance of collaboration and communication.
  • Average people can be excellent listeners, as they are more likely to pay attention and be receptive to others' needs and perspectives.
  • Average people can be highly adaptable and flexible, as they may have to deal with unexpected challenges more often.
  • Average people tend to have a realistic and grounded perspective on life.
  • Average people are often hardworking and persistent, as they may have to work harder to achieve their goals.

Verbal expressions of average characters

Here are some potential expressions used by average characters.

  • "I'm not great at anything"
  • "I'm not particularly talented"
  • "I'm not remarkable"
  • "I'm not exceptional"
  • "I'm just okay"
  • "I'm nothing special"
  • "I'm just average"
  • "I'm not outstanding"
  • "I'm just like everyone else"

Relationships of average characters

Here are some ways that being average could affect your character's relationships.

  • Co-worker relationships (e.g. collaborative, competitive, tense)
  • Teacher-student relationships (e.g. supportive, critical, distant)
  • Acquaintance relationships (e.g. cordial, casual, awkward)
  • Parent-child relationships (e.g. authoritative, permissive, neglectful)
  • Friendships (e.g. loyal, superficial, one-sided)
  • Neighbor relationships (e.g. friendly, indifferent, hostile)
  • Customer-client relationships (e.g. friendly, transactional, demanding)
  • Romantic relationships (e.g. passionate, stable, toxic)
  • Sibling relationships (e.g. close, distant, competitive)

Examples from books of characters who are average

  • Harry Potter from the "Harry Potter" series by J.K. Rowling
  • Elizabeth Bennet from "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen
  • Bilbo Baggins from "The Hobbit" by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Jane Eyre from "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte
  • Scout Finch from "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee
  • Holden Caulfield from "The Catcher in the Rye" by J.D. Salinger
  • Frodo Baggins from "The Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Winston Smith from "1984" by George Orwell
  • Katniss Everdeen from "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins

Writing exercises for writing average characters

Here are some writing exercises you might try for learning to write average characters.

  • Experiment with different narrative techniques to highlight your character's averageness. For example, you might try writing from the perspective of a more dynamic character who sees your protagonist as unremarkable, or use a third-person omniscient narrator who can contrast your character's thoughts and actions with those of other people in their world.
  • Start by defining what "average" means to you in terms of personality traits or behaviors. Is it someone who is neither exceptional nor terrible, or someone who blends in with the crowd?
  • Think about how your character's averageness affects their relationships with others. Do they struggle to stand out or make an impression? Are they content with being overlooked or do they secretly yearn for recognition?
  • Use prompts that focus on everyday experiences, such as grocery shopping or commuting to work, to help you explore your character's average traits. How do they react to routine tasks or unexpected events? Do they tend to follow the crowd or strike out on their own?
  • Consider how your character's environment or upbringing has shaped their averageness. Did they have a relatively normal childhood, or did they experience trauma or adversity that made them want to blend in with the crowd?
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