Example of Character Exploration: Rufus Cartwright

April 19, 2008 at 11:41 am (Flash Fiction, Writting) ()

            For today’s post I decided to give and example of my character building process for comic and film scripts. I’ve plotted the history of one of the characters from a comic idea I’ve had for six months now. I’ve decided to take one of the “bad guys” in the script and give him a past, which I think makes him a hell of a lot more relatable then how I’ve written him in the past to be. This is just me exploring him, giving him a voice. It seems self serving but if I make this character more interesting to me the it will be more interesting to you, that is the ultimate goal.

            Not only did I flesh out his background I also wrote a Flash Fiction of his past to get an idea of what kind of person he was, also I like this Flash Fiction because it also helped me flesh out another character. Some one who I really didn’t give any thought to until now. This gives me a better idea of why Rufus had become such a slime ball, its because he is in love with his boss, he wants to please her. Anyway I could go on forever, but this first post is just the rough outline of Rufus and then the post before this one is the Flash Fiction I wrote about how Lindsey and Rufus met. Enjoy.

The Story of Rufus Cartwright

Age: 43

Weight: 180 lb

Height: 5’8” 

Description: Rufus would be best described as a slick man but not greasy. His face is at times gentile but usually very harsh. His hair is cut short, curly and turning salt and pepper in color. He has a mustache which off sets his salt and pepper hair. Rufus is generally dressed in suits so it is hard to notice that he has a bit of a pot belly going on.


Personality: Generally Rufus seems to be a nice man, but he has become a part of the music industry. He has done things that he doesn’t agree with, nothing sinful but they definitely disagreed with his convictions. After dedicating twenty years to being a Recording Rep he is quick to defend his actions (and those of the company), he has changed drastically from the wide eyed Paul Simon wannabe of his youth.


            Rufus grew up in a small America town where he had dreams of becoming a musician. His inspiration was Paul Simon and Rufus hopped to write songs as good as Simons. He was so inspired to be come a musician he dropped out of high school as soon as he hit 18 and moved from Iowa to California.

            Once out in California, Rufus found it hard to make a living. He took a job as a waiter and did odd jobs when he wasn’t practicing. He went to open mic nights and tried to get signed but unfortunately Folk wasn’t “in” and no one would touch him. Rufus tried to adapt his sound to the Grunge that was popular in this time but still he couldn’t get signed.

            After years of frustration Rufus finally got a break, unfortunately it wasn’t what he was looking for. A record company rep, Lindsey Cunningham,  saw him play, she wasn’t impressed with his style or anything but she did see Rufus as a potential rep for the company. She lured in Rufus with the promise of money, which he gladly accepted because he was sick of his “Hard Knock Life”.

            In 1995 Rufus found himself the new employ of Corporation Records, one of the biggest record companies in the world. Like all new Record Reps Rufus sought out to change the music industry. Unfortunately for him he didn’t know what he got into. His first few years at Corporation Records were hard for him, he would bring in a band he thought was good but the higher ups would shoot him down. The higher ups wanted boy bands, the only reason Rufus kept his job during that period was the one occasion that he did play by the company’s rules landed the company one of the biggest boy bands in the era.

            In 2000 Lindsey Cunningham became C.E.O. of Corporation Records and her new job meant good things for Rufus and in a way, bad things too. Lindsey had confronted Rufus about his unwillingness to play by Corporation Records rules and sign bands that they could mold. She offered Rufus a better position in the company if he started to “play nice”. He agreed, sold out if you will. (Note: Explore a sexual sub plot between Lindsey and Rufus, which is why he got the new position because Lindsey treats her bitches well).

            For Fifteen years Rufus had become known as the best Rep in the bussness. He had the ability to turn young impressionable youth into mega stars. He did everything to keep his talent in the eyes of the press, ranging from leaking bogus stories of drinking and drug habits to putting up sex tapes on the internet. He was a devil.






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