As writers, we want to make our characters as unique and interesting as possible. One way to do this is to give your character a special skill or talent that sets him apart from other people. This might be something small, like having a green thumb or being good with animals, to a larger and more competitive talent like stock car racing or being an award-winning film producer.
When choosing a talent or skill, think about the personality of your character, his range of experiences and who his role models might have been. Some talents might be genetically imparted while others are created through exposure (such as a character talented at fixing watches from growing up in his father’s watch shop) or grow out of interest (archery, wakeboarding, or magic). Don’t be afraid to be creative and make sure the skill or talent is something that works with the scope of the story.
Description: Negotiating with someone in order to agree upon a price
Beneficial Strengths or Abilities: being able to read people, knowing the true value of a given product, not being easily intimidated
Character Traits Suited for this Skill or Talent: bold, uninhibited, confident, focused, persistent, persuasive, resourceful, thrifty, greedy, stingy
Required Resources and Training: Anyone can haggle, but as with any skill, the more you do it, the better you get at it. This art can be perfected in places where haggling is common: flea markets, street kiosks, pawn shops, etc. It is also an expected practice in certain countries. To work on this skill, it could be beneficial to frequent these locales and see how the pros do it.
Associated Stereotypes and Perceptions: It’s assumed that good hagglers are often cheap or stingy because they refuse to give a penny more than they think an item is worth. Those who haggle well and often can be viewed as unethical, because they care only about what they can get for an item rather than what it’s really worth.
Scenarios Where this Skill Might be Useful:
- When visiting a country or culture where haggling is common practice
- When money is scarce and every penny needs to be saved
- To keep from being hoodwinked by a cutthroat vendor or business person
- When negotiating a big business deal
- When trying to negate or reduce the severity of a consequence
- When a specific item must be procured and there is only a certain amount of money available
Resources for Further Information:
You can brainstorm other possible Skills and Talents your characters might have by checking out our FULL LIST of this Thesaurus Collection. And for more descriptive help for Setting, Symbolism, Character Traits, Physical Attributes, Emotions, Weather and more, check out our Thesaurus Collections page.