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Old 05-01-2006, 11:15 AM   #1
Brody
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On the flip side from funny, we've got the melodrama and emotional wringer of angst. How do you incorporate this into your characters without going over the top?
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Old 05-01-2006, 01:20 PM   #2
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I generally try to avoid built-in angst because everyone else does a good job of filling the game with it. My characters are usually happy go lucky smartasses who tend toward understatement and sarcasm.
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Old 05-01-2006, 07:00 PM   #3
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Sort of like Malifax said, I generally try to avoid manufacturing things just because. That said, it does happen sometimes, but it comes up more as a response to the surroundings/story/other characters, etc. I suppose when it -does- happen though it ends up being more low key and resulting in brooding or such, probably how I end up doing it myself. =-)
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Old 05-24-2006, 03:10 PM   #4
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Old 05-24-2006, 05:05 PM   #5
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The important thing, speaking as a professional actor, to consider while creating emotional wells for your characters is this:

Any time you decide to make your character "angsty" or "funny", you are (indeed) manufacturing something that is self-focused. The problem with this is two things. A) It may very well be unrealistic and seem forced, and B) It takes the player away from focusing on the other characters involved with the RP, making it difficult for the RPers to work together in a given SL(or scene, in the case of the Stage). In acting, we call it "playing the emotional quality" or better yet, "playing the problem".

Meisner and David Mammet devised a system in which this can be avoided. Let's take a look at the example in this thread.

Angst. How do I incorperate it? In real life, let's think of an over-angsty or angsty person I know. We all probably have ex-girlfriends/boyfriends that can fit the bill, but I'll use my younger brother. How does my 20 year old brother see the world?

Point of View. He sees the government as hopeless, he sees the human race as hopeless. He sees our family as hopeless. He sees education as a sham. He hates censorship and will press things too far for the purpose of making his feelings on any given subject obvious.

You can incorperate angst(and any emotional quality) into a character without going over by focusing on their point of view(and therefor, the other RPers in a story).

---

EXAMPLE ONE-

BARTENDER: Someday, Angsty, I am gonna get out of here. I'm really going to make something of myself. I've been livin' in Edge City's slums too long. I'm going somewhere green, Angsty.

"PLAYING THE PROBLEM" ANGSTY CHARACTER: Every time I try to make something of myself, I can't do it. I don't do anything right. I might as well just skip town and live in a @#% hole.

BARTENDER: (uhh... he didn't hear a word I just said, but ok) ... don't say that, Angsty. You know we love seein' you around here. This bar's is the only hole you belong in.



EXAMPLE TWO:

BARTENDER: Someday, Angsty, I am gonna get out of here. I'm really going to make something of myself. I've been livin' in Edge City's slums too long. I'm going somewhere green, Angsty.

MEISNER ANGSTY CHARACTER: Miss, you should know better after all these years living in Edge City. Nothing's green anymore around here, and even the places that are will poison you. It's all fake. There ain't nothing left out there for any of us, so it's best just to stay put and survive.

BARTENDER: Oh, Angsty. Always the same - somebody took your light at the end of the tunnel away from you and never gave it back. You want another drink?


---

As you can see, in the second example, Angsty looked at what the bartender said through his specific point of view. As long as you use point of view and not general characterization, you really can't go overboard, and you will stay connected to your other RPers. Your character feels very specifically about every single thing he hears and sees, just like real people do in the real world.

That's my two cents.
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Old 06-14-2006, 07:37 PM   #6
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Bumped for more responses and to chase the spammer off the board.
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Old 06-15-2006, 02:23 AM   #7
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I incorporate angst into characters by simply having them act in a way in relation to events that I feel that character would act if they where real. Of course sometimes I am heavily into the mindset of the character and their angst is also influenced by how I would feel about some things happening to them or have had happen to them.

I suppose it is usually a combination of the two.
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