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In case any of my friends or family members actually read this Blog, please consider all Names, Characters, Places and Incidents to be the product of the author's imagination and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or locales are entirely COINCIDENTAL...Muaaah!! Now, really, about me: I bring the crazy wherever I go, so I've been told...I make fun of myself more than anyone else ever could. I hate: the awkward silence in elevators, watches with no numbers, picky eaters, Cancer and legalism. I love: coffee, stalking Hugh Jackman, my Spanx, COMMENTS, sarcasm and writing: Middle Grade, NA, YA Paranormal and Urban Fantasy.

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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

C is for Crazy Characters, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and IWSG

Hi guys- today I'm attempting to write one post that serves two purposes:
(1) It's day three of the A-Z Challenge which brings us to the letter C.  C is for Crazy Characters.

(2) Today is also the first Wednesday of the month which means the (IWSG) Insecure Writer's Support Group is in da house. To learn more about that, check out Alex J. Cavanaugh's site.

 
Creating crazy characters isn't easy.  I know, I know. You would think creating crazy characters wouldn't be a problem for someone like Jaybird. Cause what's the first "rule" about writing again?  Oh yeah, write about what you know...  
 
Hey, I'll be the first to jump up and admit, any character that springs forth from the confines of my mind, in general, doesn't come out "normal".  But you know what? For once, I think I'm OK with that. Although creating and writing dialogue for a nutty character isn't always easy and may pose a bit of a challenge to get  just right, (crazy is a fine line to walk) I like a little cray cray in my characters! Normal characters as a writer and a reader, kind of  bore me. What about you?  Are you drawn to a character that is mundane or do you like a little nutter mixed in from time to time? Who could forget Grandpa Potts from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang? How eccentric and wild were Grandpa and Caractacus Potts (Dick Van Dyke), yet you couldn't help but love them, right? Crazy characters like these, are the reason people will watch and/or read the same movie/book, over and over and over again.
                                   
 
My oldest is reading Rachel Caine's Morganville Vampire series right now. Caine's character Myrnin, is a nice example of a character who is completely off the rails but somehow, likable all the same.What character traits will draw you in and keep you invested in a story? Tell me, who's your favorite Crazy Character from a book or movie?
  


 



 

51 comments:

  1. I would love to be able to write a truly crazy character - but I'm afraid I'd end up going too far and making a really awful character. Funny though, I can't think of any at the moment!

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    1. It is a very fine line to cross. Sometimes crazy is off-putting. But if it's done right, well, crazy can be fabulous!

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  2. I agree with Annalisa, I think I'd go too far in the wrong direction with a crazy character. As for ones I like, Harley Quinn from Batman immediately springs to mind; love her!

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    1. Harley Quinn, is a great example. Even though she knows "Mr. J" is nuts, she loves him anyway and goes along with his brand crazy. She is an amazing character with a lot of layers and depth to her! Nice choice.

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  3. It is a fine line when writing crazy. The more fun type of crazy is what suits me. I believe characters need to be someone we can relate to while also being a little bit larger than life. Now that's a tall order. Completely drawing a blank on crazy characters that I've read.

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    1. It is! It's really hard to nail crazy down. But when it's done right, it makes for awesome reading/watching!

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  4. I do love crazy characters, although I don't think I've written any yet. I really should. :) Hmm, favorite crazy characters? Jeffery from Coupling comes to mind. I can't believe I can't think of a book character, though. Man, I know as soon as I click to another blog I'll think , "Oh yeah! I love them! How did I not think of them?" Oh well. ;)

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    1. LOL. That's what usually happens to me. You'll think if it tonight or tomorrow. You can always pop back in and throw it in the comments!

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  5. I like the zany professor from the Back to the Future series.
    Karen

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    1. Hi Karen! Yes, he is a wondeful example. Very lovable but quite mad.

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  6. Crazy characters are the best. The make for an interesting read.

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    1. Hard work but I really think they are much more interesting to read about too :)

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  7. My favorite crazy character is Jaybird....oh, wait...you said book or movie...hmmm...in that case, I'd have to go with Howlin' Mad Murdock from The A-Team (both the t.v. and movie version).

    Crazy is always endearing :)

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    1. Ha ha ha! I hope my brand of crazy could be considered endearing...lol.
      Awesome example! Murdock from the A-team is amazeballs. He made that movie/show hilarious. He is the kind of crazy character that people will shake their heads at, but still you can't help yourself from loving him.

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  8. We just watched "While You Were Sleeping" with the kids this weekend when I realized they've never seen it. That whole family is crazy, and the dialogue is laugh out loud random and funny. I want to write crazy characters like that.

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    1. I live with crazy characters like that. LOL

      You will, no doubt, be able to write a character like that. You have both the talent and the drive to do it. Looking forward to reading what you come up with!

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  9. I agree with ilima's comment about "While You Were Sleeping." The family dinner scenes in particular have always stood out to me as awesome writing/acting.

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    1. Yes! They are really funny and done quite well.

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  10. Crazy characters have to walk a fine line. If they're too over the top, readers may not like them. But the crazy stuff that happens to them - that's always interesting :)

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    1. I love when they are thrown in the mix in a serious situation. That way, things can always be lightened up a bit. But that's my taste. I don't ever like things to be too serious!

      Gwen- Thanks so much for the follow and the comment! Welcome to the Bird's Nest :)

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  11. Oh, I've heard I need to read the Morganville Vampire series! I need to get on that. And thanks for your kind comment over on my blog today... we need to stick together!!! So glad you get it!!!!!

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    1. You're very welcome Morgan! And I read the Morganville series and have really enjoyed it. Mrynin is a totally mad vampire and a very interesting character to have along for the ride!

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  12. Hi-- very nice to meet you and visit your blog-- I'm helping Alex out with hosting duties for IWSG this month. I love fun characters in books and some of my favorite are from books I used to read my kids. I loved Junie B. Jones and Amilia Bedelia. Crazy, kooky and fun!

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    1. Hey Julie! So nice to meet you too. I'm so glad you are helping the Ninja Captain out!

      Junie B. Jones is fab! She is another wonderful example. Kooky, quirky and fun always grab my attention- for sure.

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  13. They say truth is stranger than fiction, so the craziest character you might dream up might find its counterpart in reality.

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    1. HI Elizabeth! My life has definitely proven over the years, that truth is stranger than fiction. For sure!!

      Thanks so much for stopping in and commenting-

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  14. Crazy characters indeed - My girls only recently discovered Chitty and have absolutely loved it!

    New follower here. I'm stopping by for the "A to Z" challenge and I look forward to visiting again!

    Sylvia
    http://www.writinginwonderland.blogspot.com/

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    1. Hey Sylvia- Great big Welcome to the Bird's Nest! Thanks so much for the follow and comment.

      Don't you just love Chitty? I have watched that movie thousands of times but still find myself drawn to it over and over again.

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    1. "We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams" - Willy Wonka is a fantastic example of a mad genious!

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  16. Great post! Hm, I do consider the Doctor a bit crazy.

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    1. Thanks Christine! And yes, the Doctor is a nutter for sure.

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  17. That's a little bit odd. As I type this I'm watching 'First Men In The Moon' which has Lionel Jeffries in it - who played Grandpa Potts in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

    Spooky no?

    And as I'm in fact sharing mode did you know Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was written by Ian Fleming - the inventor of James Bond?

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    1. Hi Chippy! Wow, that is odd. Lionel Jeffries was a wonderful actor. I was sad to hear of his passing in 09.

      And cool fact, Ian Fleming invented James Bond? Did not know that.

      Thanks so much for commenting!!

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  18. Hey, There, in a motor car, in chitty chitty bang bang, we love you... Another crazy character I love is Willy Wonka (just saw Alex likes him too).

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    1. Love it! Willy Wonka is rad. And now I'll be singing that song all day long, lol. It just has a way of sticking with you, don't you think?

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  19. Interesting post - when I write I find myself constantly trying to come up with crazy characters and it isn't always easy. They can become the same character if I'm not careful - visiting from the challenge.

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    1. Hi David! Thanks so much for stopping in and commenting.

      It really is a challenge to nail a crazy character down just right. But man, when it's done right, people will always remember them!

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  20. As crazy goes, I am pretty fond of Biff in Christopher Moore's "Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff."
    Anyone in the Hitchhiker's series is good too.

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    1. Hi Zoe! I'm not familiar with Biff. I'll have to look that one up- but Hitchhiker's are a very good example. Everyone is nuts.

      Thanks so much for stopping in and commenting!! Come on back again soon.

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  21. I love crazy characters, too, but you are right, it's a fine line to walk because if though they are crazy, they still have to come off as authentic.

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    1. They take some pretty hard work and dedication to nail down just right if you are writing them. And the actor can bring a lot to the character too, like Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow, he's another good example.

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  22. Loved Dick Van Dyke and Lionel Jeffries in that movie! The automatic breakfast machine caught me immediately, with 'Sweet Toots' shortly after.

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    1. Hi Susan! Yes- I think Dick VanDyke is amazing in everything he's in. And Lionel Jeffries was fab too. That breakfast machine would come in handy around my house, for sure!

      Thanks so much for commenting!

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    1. Woot woot! YAY. I'm glad I'm not the only one who likes a little cray cray thrown in their characters. Makes life so much more interesting!

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  24. Crazy's hard...but so important. <3 Happy A to Z

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    1. Hi Rebecca! Happy A-Z to you too. I'm glad you're into crazy too!(That doesn't sound quite right, but I hope you know what I mean, lol.)

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  25. Crazy characters are awesome! As a Morganville Vampires fan, I can't help but think that Myrnin is an excellent example. My all-time favorite crazy character, though, is easily Mary Cherry from the short-lived TV show Popular. She's so bizarre, she seriously needs to be seen to be believed!

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    1. Isn't Myrnin rad? He's also a total and complete whack-job but I can't help but be drawn to him! :)

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  26. Characters don't have to be fully crazy, but have a crazy side to their personality that shines through at just the right times. I need to be able to relate to a character, and I have a hard time relating to someone completely off-the-wall. But the crazy quirks and eccentricities absolutely make a character.

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