First: Before I get into the meat of this post, I'd like to take a moment to announce my contest winner. (I should have done this last week, but homecoming got in the way. LOL) I planned on choosing one winner from those that commented on my posts for the month of September, but ya know what? I had so much fun reading all those comments that I'm gonna send each person who commented to my posts in September a set of stationary. So if the following will e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a snail mail, I'll get those out to you; Heidi, Taryn, Vicki, Gin Glynn, Lara, and Christyjan.
So - now let's get into the heart of the discussion. Idiosyncrasies. Wow, gotta love that word. I was trying to think about what I might comment on and of course I was in bed at the time. Then it dawned on me that my current heroine was lacking an idiosyncrasy, that one off characteristic unique only to her. We all have one small something that no one else shares. Oh, well, me might share the same odd tick, but the reason behind that tick would set us apart from the others.
Point in case, my first hubbies odd way of brushing his teeth. Most folks squeeze the toothpaste onto their brushes, then scrub away. Not this guy. He'd squeeze the tube, bite off a hunk of toothpaste and then brush. Why? You know, I never thought to ask him and no I'm wondering too.
Here's one of my own idiosyncrasies. My first year at Girl Scout Camp, we spent the night in a cabin with our bedrolls. They had overhead fans, but it was soooo hot, I decided to sleep without my sheet. I woke up with the sensation that a million ants were crawling on my body. I think the fan must have stirred the fine hairs on my body. I snatched up my sheet and huddled beneath, frightened for dear life. I was, after all, only seven. To this day, I can't sleep without covers no matter how hot it is.
The actual habit if sleeping with a blanket is not so unique, but the reason behind it has to be a one of a kind. I think our characters could use similar idiosyncracies, habits with interesting causes. It's the little things that make our characters pop off the page.