META: Some Thoughts on Problems in Characterization in Serial Literature

Tom Russell milos_parker at
Thu Aug 9 20:33:35 PDT 2007

On Aug 9, 10:46 pm, Jamie Rosen < at> wrote:
> On Aug 9, 8:31 pm, Tom Russell <milos_par... at> wrote:
> > By speech patterns, I refer not to rhythms of spoken speech, but to
> > word choices.  I agree with Martin, though, that people talk
> > differently under different circumstances.
> > I withdraw my generalization about persons not having any speech
> > patterns, while still maintaining that the "unique voice" is,
> > generally, a shallow method of characterization.
> I can agree to that; it seems to me that giving someone a single
> "unique voice" runs counter to the "people speak differently in
> different situations" belief. Each person will have many unique
> voices, and some of them aren't all that different from other people's.

To get really trippy with it, one can argue that our outward actions
are a kind of constant reinvention, that we are at once never and
always truly ourselves.  Or, as Sam Shepherd once put it: "personality
is everything that's false in a human being".


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