Wednesday, 26 June 2013
I decided to go for a more entertaining story - this new story involves a man and his dog.
It's meal time for the man. He's in his kitchen/dining room, with the dog asleep in the corner.
He opens the fridge, which awakens the dog. Getting out a steak, the dog goes over to the man and barks.
The man brings out a dog bowl and gets some dog food out of the fridge. The door hits the dog's head!
The man puts the dog's bowl over by the door and the dog has a sniff, but the dog doesn't want this boring old dog food, he wants the tasty steak! Making faces, the dog goes back to the man.
The man shoos the dog away and tells him to eat his own food. The dog goes back and tries to enjoy his food, taking a bite, but it's so bland the dog just drops the food back in the bowl.
The man has been cooking away and it's now time to serve the food.
The dog paws at the man again and gestures to the steak in a doggy manner. The man's annoyed and shows the dog to the door and tells him to sit. As the man goes back to his steak the dog follows him and goes under the table. The man puts his steak on the table and goes back to the fridge to get beer. The dog strikes, jumping onto the low table and wolfing the steak down. The man turns back to find the dog on the table. He lunges for the dog, but the dog gives him the slip. The man chases, but steps into the dog bowl by the door, slipping and falling. The dog comes back, and licks the man - a peace offering? Nope, the dog picks up the man's beer and takes that too.
In terms of research, using a dog character is good because dogs almost exclusively use body language for communication and the tail is a means for what I termed enhancing action.
A human character has all the normal outlets for secondary action. Having been paired with an animal we clearly take the emphasis away from verbal dialogue and rely on body language.