1. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Just Out of Curiosity...?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Liza, Aug 13, 2011.

    Do you all know the Jung personality test? Well, I tend to take it for my characters to get a handle on how they think. For example, my main character Lucy is an ESTJ, quite strange really, because that's the opposite of myself, the INFP.

    Out of curiosity, what are your main character's types? I want to see if there is a pattern of any kind, what's most common and how diverse characters are, how it helps support the story.

    And if it's of any interest, my other supporting characters got these results:
    Austin is a pure INFP, Ravenna an ENFP and Ashton the lovely ESFP.
     
  2. Kangaroo
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    Kangaroo New Member

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    Never heard about the test before, but I made my main character take it. He is an ESTP
     
  3. Lightman
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    Lightman Active Member

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    I know way too much about it. I don't think it's a good fictional tool - it pigeonholes people far too much into a limited mold.
     
  4. Sevvie
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    Sevvie Member

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    Hah, my main is almost opposite to me. Evanee is an ISTJ and I'm INFP--Looks like we're the same, Liza :p

    This is my first time using this test, but it's interesting to see these answers put into percentages.

    Going on to try out some of my other characters.
     
  5. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    I took the Jung-test (or to be precise, a character took it), but I don't think it was very useful. Several of the questions very far too similar for my taste. Look at these examples:

    48. You feel at ease in a crowd
    66. It is easy for you to communicate in social situations

    37. Often you prefer to read a book than go to a party
    62. You prefer to spend your leisure time alone or relaxing in a tranquil family atmosphere
    68. You get pleasure from solitary walks

    27. You frequently and easily express your feelings and emotions
    59. You find it difficult to talk about your feelings

    How is this not the same questions over and over?
     
  6. teacherayala
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    teacherayala Contributing Member

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    Many personality tests repeat/reword the same questions in order to see how strongly you really fit. Because what happens is that due to wording or due to our own self-perceptions, we place ourselves in a category, but then later when we're not overthinking, we place ourselves more naturally in a different place. Personality tests take that into account.
     
  7. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I might have my characters take it just for curiosity's sake - but only after the book is finalized. I'd be too afraid of losing my view of them if done before. I don't want to subconsciously make my characters fit the test results - they should be spontaneous and unpredictable, just like real people.
     
  8. mugen shiyo
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    mugen shiyo Contributing Member

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    Those Jung tests are like the new horoscope for "smart people", lol.

    I use the horoscope sometimes for my characters. The general horoscope, not the day to day. But only for some characters. I usually have a definite way I want my characters to be- more or less- and some of them tend to change.

    But now that I think about it, those spooky, mysterious, and vague sounding day to day horoscopes might have a use...
     
  9. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    So they use the same questions at least twice because they know the first answer will be wrong?
     
  10. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Oh no, my character's have far more personality than that, this is just a (very) general thing. Actually, I think I get something out of it by answering the questions, I decided on how they would think, and make decisions by picking answers. Although, the result is sometimes useful, and it usually matches the character's general nature. I can just throw in some personality traits I like from the profile.

    I don't know about others, but this helped me get a much better mental picture of the characters, especially Ashton. He was basically an almost traitless character before.
     
  11. AllThingsMagical
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    AllThingsMagical Member

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    My main character is INFJ which is very similar to me - INFP. I actually found it really helpful doing this for my MC - there were a few questions that I had to think about a little and as I'm still in the planning stages it seemed a good way to check I really 'know' my MC before I start writing about him.
     
  12. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    AllThingsMagical: I totally agree with that.

    How strange, INFPs are the only group said so far, perhaps it's because they are natural writers, and this is, of course, a writing forum. ;)
     
  13. Lightman
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    Lightman Active Member

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    I tried to do this for a character in a short story I'm mostly finished with and got ISTJ, which just feels off. I suppose doing this with mentally unhinged people isn't really appropriate.

    Btw, I'm an INTJ (though I reject the anti-emotionalism/superiority complex that the average INTJ seems to feel), so there's at least one exception to your theory. :p
     
  14. AllThingsMagical
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    AllThingsMagical Member

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    There was another thread on what character types the writers were, rather than characters and very few people said INFP - which I thought was a bit strange. Pretty much everyone fell into the I category but after that it was fairly varied. There's the link if you're interested. :)

    http://www.writingforums.org/showthread.php?t=44519
     
  15. teacherayala
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    teacherayala Contributing Member

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    No, they repeat questions to try and eliminate human error from blurring the results.
     
  16. Gallowglass
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    Gallowglass Contributing Member Contributor

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    ESFP.

    Extraverted 56
    Sensing 38
    Feeling 12
    Perceiving 44

    It seems exactly like the character in the book. Nothing wrong with this test at all, other than some newer writers might feel that they can't go outside of it. It's useful as a tool for seeing famous personalities that your characters are like, so if ever you're stuck you can think 'what would X do in this situation.' But as the determination of what your character is and what he does? No - don't bother using it. Use your own imagination.
     
  17. Sevvie
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    Well after using it, I definitely don't think that I'm limited by my results. That's just silly! Your character is yours, and you make them who and how they are :)

    As has been stated, I did find that answering some of the questions about two of my characters was helpful in making me figure out how it applied to them.

    But it's also clear that this test is limited in many ways. There are so many personality quirks that can never be accounted for. Two of my characters got ISTJ, but the first one is just reserved and critical because of of her upbringing, but she's a sweet and gentle person when not emotionally frustrated.

    The second one however, (Who got really close percentages in the same "code") is very cold, and bitter about life. He's hostile in many ways, and pretty much unloving. And these traits are just how he is, not because of a certain upbringing. He's just a downright cruel person. :)
     
  18. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Well, exactly. I think of it as a learning tool for my characters. You know, a way to get inside their heads. :p
     

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