What has made your life interesting?
Some people might say that they lead a boring life and nothing much happens to them. Yet, I have met very few people that after a few minutes of conversation, I would agree with them. Granted, some people’s lives are more “exciting” than others. But that doesn’t make one life less interesting. Everyone’s life is unique. Even identical twins grow up to be different people. So, what is it that is interesting?
Here’s a little exercise you might enjoy. Pick a famous person that you find interesting. Take some time and write down all of the things that you find interesting about them. Your list may include appearance, type of work, travels, political views, hobbies, events they participated in, etc.
Next, pick a family member, relative, friend, co-worker, or neighbor. Someone you know well and find interesting or admire. Make a list of interesting things about them. As before be as complete as you can.
Now the fun begins!
Write your name at the top of a piece of paper. Without judging whether you think it’s interesting or not, complete a list for yourself. Use the same criteria and categories you used for the other two lists. Include appearance, type of work, travels, political views, hobbies, events they participated in, etc. Don’t think about your answers, just write.
When you have finished, compare all three lists. Are there any similarities? What from list number three would someone else think is interesting? Are there any “mundane” things that jump out as interesting on any of the lists.
If you are really brave, ask a close friend or someone else that you trust to be truthful what they find interesting about you. Be prepared for a few surprises.
Now, for those of you who write, think about your characters. Are they a bit flat? What can you add to their back story to make them more interesting? Did they have a job repairing organs while they went to college? Did they travel to the Yucatan during spring break and got lost in the jungle? Do they carve bear figurines out of soapstone to relieve stress?
A few lines of your story mentioning one of these points can add depth to your character that makes them more real.
So, I ask again, “What makes your life interesting?”