Friday, June 3
Do Your Characters Sound Like Androids?
Today I decided to blog about one of my biggest pet peeves. Characters that don't sound human. How many "Star Trek: The Next Generation" fans do we have out there? It's one of my favorite shows. Anybody know about Commander Data? Data is an android who strives to be human. Besides the fact that he looks artificial and has no emotions, another thing that separates him from humans is his speech. He's incapable of using contractions. Every time I read dialogue and the characters don't use contractions, they come off sounding like him in my head. They sound like androids, with no emotions. But, maybe that's just me.
Strangely enough, I'm guilty of this myself. Although my characters are saying can't, don't, and I'm in my head, I often find my fingers automatically typing cannot,do not and I am. Then I go back during revisions and change it.
I'm sure there are dozens of writers who do this on purpose for various reasons. I just don't know what they are.
What about you? Do your characters use contractions? If not, why? What pet peeves do you have?