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: Knife throwing is as described–forcefully sending a sharpened metal projectile into a target. Knife throwing is done for sport, entertainment and may even be used in hunting, although this requires considerable skill and accuracy. The size of the target, distance, angle of the throw and whether the target is stationary or moving are all …
Beneficial Strengths or Abilities: strong eyesight, upper body strength, dexterity, intuition
Character Traits Suited for this Skill or Talent: focus, determination, self-controlled, decisive, alertness, calm, disciplined, patience
Required Resources and Training:
A skill like knife throwing requires dedication and practice. A person can be self taught, but will learn quicker if mentored by someone with strong blade skills, able to analyze the thrower’s stance, grip, angle of throw and who can assess the thrower’s mental state for…
Associated Stereotypes and Perceptions:
- Circus performers and magicians
- Thieves and assassins
- Medieval society hunters…
Scenarios Where this Skill Might be Useful:
- Hunting when guns are not available or not ideal (too loud or expensive)
- Protecting oneself from harm
- Winning money or fame in contests and competitions for knife throwing…
Resources for Further Information:
Talents and skills not only make our characters stand out, they often help them attain their goals. So choosing them strategically can greatly enhance both the character and the story.
If this is something you’d like to learn more about, you can find the entries in their entirety at One Stop For Writers, where all our thesauruses are cross-referenced and linked for easy navigation. If you’re interested in seeing a free sampling of the Talent and Skill Thesaurus and our other descriptive collections, head on over and register at One Stop!
Angela is a writing coach, international speaker, and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also is a founder of One Stop For Writers, a portal to powerful, innovative tools to help writers elevate their storytelling.