Hello again! I’m back with some more character-related stuff — this time ideas for bad habits. Like hobbies and fears, bad habits can make a character feel more human. (Or at least more real and relatable, if they aren’t human.) So I’ve come up with a list to share with you all, some that I’ve used and some that I haven’t, and some that I plan to.
I suppose I should just get on with it already, so here are 35 possible bad habits that you can give to your characters.
1) Cracking knuckles
3) Time Wasting [I think this is something we all do sometimes . . . definitely relatable]
4) Constantly Changing His/Her Mind
5) Swearing/Cursing All The Time
6) Picking Fights
8) Making Jokes/Inappropriate Comments At Bad Times
9) Late For Everything
10) Nail Biting
11) Finger Pointing [This could be literal, figurative, or both]
12) Sniffing A Lot
13) Nose Picking
15) Grinding His/Her Teeth
16) Inability To Sit Still [This is very much me . . . I try to hold still, though]
17) Chewing With Their Mouth Open
18) Drinking Too Much Alcohol, Coffee, Tea, Soda, etc.
19) Always On His/Her Phone [Unfortunately, I think this can be very relatable]
20) Smacking Gum
21) Constant Eye Rolling
22) Glancing At Their Watch Often
23) Overeating [Or just snacking when they’re not hungry]
24) Jumping To Conclusions
25) Scratching/Picking At Skin
27) Biting Lips [Again, I do this . . . very relatable for me]
28) Talking With Their Mouth Full [Kind of related to #17]
29) Always Apologizing
31) Procrastinating [This is so sadly relatable for me]
32) Buying Things And Not Using Them
33) Bragging [This could be about themselves, or others, which could be interesting]
35) Interrupting Others While They’re Talking
I think that giving bad habits such as these to characters can make them much more memorable, as well — especially minor characters. I mean, the protagonist’s aunt who is always apologizing is much more memorable than just the protagonist’s aunt, and the same with the stranger who kept cracking his knuckles, rather than the stranger.
This could be especially useful if that minor character is going to be mentioned again or play a bigger part later on, as they’re more likely to have stuck in the reader’s memory. Anyway, I’m getting a bit off track.
I hope you find this useful, and as always, if you’ve got any additions, I’d love to hear them! Thank you for reading, and I hope you have a nice day.
Include a key and/or a lock somewhere in your next scene. It could be just a small mention, or it could play a big part. It may not even be physical (e.g., a character feels like they’re locked in a cage by someone’s expectations or choices, if that makes any sense at all). It’s up to you.