Apr 06 2016

#atozchallenge E is for Edelstein #Writing #CharacterTraits #writetip @lindanedelstein

The craft of fiction writing is the Theme for the #atozchallenge 2016 on the blog of @JLenniDorner
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26 writing reference books containing 26 lessons leads to a month of #WriteTips and writing samples

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E is for “Edelstein”
Book: The Writer’s Guide to Character Traits: Includes Profiles of Human Behaviors and Personality Types by Linda Edelstein @lindanedelstein
My dice roll: 17
Lesson: Bossy Style personality traits

The Bossy personality is about control. Internal traits include being competitive, confident, and having very little shame. Interpersonal includes not being deterred by punishment or pain, gets the job done, and is boastful. The normal to extreme includes “quick responses, can be aggressive if threatened.” Often the Bossy personality is able to cloak negative traits in socially responsible work, such as business takeovers. In childhood, the Bossy type is charming and persuasive, but can also be insistent, relentless, and demand to be heard and obeyed. In adulthood, a Bossy type might not notice being avoided by co-workers because the only focus is on goals, such as making the company run smoothly.

My writing sample shows Xavier fitting into this personality.

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“As you like, sir.” His secretary locked the door behind her and set the do-not-disturb block on the phone. She dropped the stack of signed papers into the inbox of a project manager and headed off to lunch.

Xavier flipped on the instant messenger computer program. Wend’s name was highlighted, bright as the dawn after a polar night. He stared at it for a minute. His mouse pointer caressed slowly back and forth over it. A smile crept onto his face.

“Hey you! Why are you on in the middle of the day? You aren’t at home sick, are you?”

“Hi.” He responded. “No, I’m not sick. Just on my lunch break at work. Figured I’d see if you were around.”

“Yup, I’m here. I don’t have class for another two hours. You better be careful, though. Your boss might not approve of you playing online at work, even if you are on break. My friend Beth was fired for that and hasn’t had a decent job since. She has to wait tables at this awful biker bar now, because that’s the only work she could get.”

Xavier laughed. “I think my boss already knows. He reads my every word, hears everything I say, and even knows my thoughts.”

“Wow. That’s kind of creepy.”

“Tell me about it. The boss was in my shower this morning and is wearing my underwear right now.”


Xavier roared with laughter. “Wend, I own this place. I own the whole building, actually. My name is on the front door.”

“Oh. Okay. That makes more sense. I was really worried for a second.” She inserted a laughing emoticon. “So what is it that you do?”

“I’m the president of a company that dabbles in several areas. Mostly we deal with acquisitions and mergers. It’s all kind of technical and boring. But, at the end of the day, we save a lot of jobs and businesses that would have otherwise vanished. We end up with new and improved ways to make and distribute products at lower costs. Best of all, I have some excellent resources to help my favorite charities.”

“That’s pretty cool, I guess. Where did you go to school to learn how to do all of that?”

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What’s your favorite personality type for male leads?

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  1. Interesting analysis of personality traits. I am not a fan of bossy characters in fiction or in real life. My list for wannabe traits in a male character would be rugged mercenary with a soft heart….totally mushy I know!
    @KalaRavi16 from
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    1. I’m sorry I didn’t showcase Heath. He gets a bigger part in the next book! Feel free to search his name on this blog to learn more.

    • Andrea on April 6, 2016 at 6:43 AM

    Xavier actually sounds funny ☺ or maybe I just like the bossy types! I don’t really have a type of favourite lead to read, I like the real changes in character, when they grow in some ways or another.

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    • Juneta on April 6, 2016 at 10:09 AM

    I love personality typing with Meyers-Briggs when deciding on the type of character and assigning them an astrology chart using those traits and influences to shape character too. ENTP is my fave male type. Not sure when I look at from the aspect of controlling etc angle There are things about all those I don’t like.
    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit
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    1. You’ll want to come back on the 11th. Not only does that post cover it, but it’s YOUR idea!

  2. Love the concept of a character “fitting into” his personality. Learning more and more about Xavier and it’s interesting. My personal fav character is the one who rises above his limitations and faces his greatest fears.
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  3. Great post. I like how you explained the character trait with examples then showed us the character in action with an excerpt. I’m not too fond of a really bossy character, but most novels need one to add to the conflict. I like charismatic characters and I like characters who are hiding something. I love when a character has a secret that we need to figure out what he/ she is keeping from someone. I guess that’s not really a trait, per se. My favorite positive traits are: intuitive, clever, courageous and charismatic and loyal and my favorite negative traits are: cunning, deceptive, and someome who is hell bent on revenge for what they believe is a justified reason, but they are wrong and just don’t know it.
    Hope you are enjoying the challenge.

    Melissa Sugar
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    • Wendy on April 6, 2016 at 7:25 PM

    I’m not a fiction writer, so it’s interesting seeing how a writer thinks and the research a writer does in developing a character and story.

    Repaying the visit from AtoZ
    Wendy at Jollett Etc.
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  4. Xavier is quite the character. Have you based him on anyone, or is he a composite character?
    I think, he might be part rabbit!
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    1. Thank you. He’s partly based on someone.
      No, he isn’t part rabbit.
      But do surf around the Yule/ Caleb posts and see if you can figure out why I find that to be an awesome and hilarious remark.

  5. A kind heart and loyalty.
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    1. Yup, those are good.

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