I hate character studies, and I mean I hate them with an absolute passion. I tend to find out about my characters as I write, throwing situations at them and letting them react instead of plotting out exactly what makes them tick. It feels more organic than writing out a piece specifically to describe someone. But since I really need to start doing some of those Writing101 prompts, here we go with today’s. Let me know what you think.
His hands carved sculptures from the air and made me think that perhaps it wasn’t just us sitting there, pretending not to watch this man twist and dance. I wonder if he’s Spanish, but I’ve never been good with accents and a tan can mean most anything. I don’t suppose it matters but he makes you want to know where he came from, how his history unfurled.
Have you met those people? The ones who expel a sort of fizz in their steps, a crackle that escapes you when you’re trying to explain it to someone else?
He’s not traditionally handsome we say later. My voice lowered as we walk away from the bus stop. His features didn’t hold that perfect polished look and his skin shined with sweat that no amount of palm wiping seemed to smooth away. He was beautiful though. He dragged in attention, falling into the bus all laughter and smiles. His grin spread wide. The words fell out, stories tumbling so quickly as he spoke to a girl he’d help jump onto the magazine rack, her own curved lips fixed firmly on him. I wondered if that was the first time they’d met. He asked her question, the sort of question you only ask on that first meeting where there is little to say but the generic. You don’t know enough yet. But he’s listening, and nodding. You can see the quiver in his limbs, the need to move, to articulate each response with action.
I do not learn his name, or where he was born, or if he likes the colour green.
I do learn that he is alive.