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Writing Mute Characters & My Recent RP Adventure

Seshi

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In case anyone was coming here hoping to find useful information, turn around, I am not an expert in this subject matter, just thoughtful insights here. If you're looking for someone else's perspective on this subject, well hello! You've come to the right place.

I wanted to share my thoughts on mute characters in writing, because until recently I hadn't even considered the possibility of a mute character in a story, or even in life for that matter. Not that I'm consciously noninclusive, it's just that I can only recall one instance where there was a mute person I've been exposed to, and it was in a movie that I watched. She was a very beautifully done character with loads of personality and a huge impact on the story, and it was because she went through this huge change, overcoming her struggle with trusting, and being afraid to the point of not speaking, that the story was so beautiful. However, she only did this because of the help of the other characters in this movie. These characters were also given the heroic honor to notice this young character and help her life change for the better when they could have easily left her alone and chosen to ignore her entirely. She was mute, she wasn't a squeaky wheel asking for attention, yet they chose to take the time to get to know her and to help her, and this made their characters better too.

The point: mute characters take more effort, but they can be worth it.

 

Since starting the RP "The Harmony of our Hearts" with @Nova who requested that there be a mute character, I have been concerned that I may have bit off a bit more than I could chew. I was thinking, how on earth will I be able to role play this character, when she can't speak.. What will her contribution even be? I'll admit, its been pretty tough to pull this off, and I hope I'm doing okay, and not creating a character that no one wants to be around... But the thing is, if mute characters take effort, then the other characters in the story will just have to take the time to understand and help my character to truly flourish again.

The premise behind her being mute is pretty rough, but basically it was from an accident that she witnessed or perhaps somehow feels to blame for. At the same time, her best friend Kagura is unhealthy, and is prone to getting injured, being around her makes her remember this accident. So i'm hoping that I can eventually rebuild this characters strength and overcome the anxiety and the fear underlying her condition.

Communicating with these characters in the story has been challenging, mostly I will be doing facial expressions, body language, and as I recently mentioned in the story, texting other characters. I don't want to add telepathy, because I feel like this story isn't going to include these types of abilities. It's more of a love story, so perhaps Sofias desire for the love interest, or even his future involvement with her will help her to heal and we can see a massive change in the character as the story reaches a climax.

Anyway, I hope you've gotten something out of this, or considered mute characters for one of your future stories. Let me know in the comments if you've got any creative ideas for Sofia to be interacting with her friends in this RP.. I'll give you the link below. Looking forward to it.

 -Seshi

 

 

  

 

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You been doing good so far with your rp char 👍

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Musuko

Posted (edited)

Oh! That explains some things with your character. I think you're doing great so far. My suggestion would be to put Sofia's thoughts into italics to demonstrate that it's not dialogue.

For instance:

Spoiler

The air conditioning was turned off, so the room was getting hotter and hotter.

"I'm gonna step outside for a moment," Marsh announces. He then takes his bags and heads outside.

I wonder if Kagura is feeling okay. Sofia considers, taking a look at her best friend.

I do feel a little guilty for not contributing as much, so let me know if you think I should do something or the story should go in a certain direction.

Edited by Musuko
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12 hours ago, Musuko said:

Oh! That explains some things with your character. I think you're doing great so far. My suggestion would be to put Sofia's thoughts into italics to demonstrate that it's not dialogue.

For instance:

  Hide contents

The air conditioning was turned off, so the room was getting hotter and hotter.

"I'm gonna step outside for a moment," Marsh announces. He then takes his bags and heads outside.

I wonder if Kagura is feeling okay. Sofia considers, taking a look at her best friend.

I do feel a little guilty for not contributing as much, so let me know if you think I should do something or the story should go in a certain direction.

Thanks for the suggestions, I’ll see about doing that 

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