People watching can be good for your writing!

The idea of people-watching can seem weird, but for a writer it can help with character development. Observing how others interact or respond to different situations can give insight to potential personalities and how they vary in this widespread world. It can also serve as a compass in the sense of gauging how many individuals act or say things in a certain manner. Nothing is worse than to create or read something that is unrealistic or less than truthful. While these may be reasons that I support people-watching for writing, what are yours?

Confessions of a published author


I love people watching, I find it inspires me.  People are so interesting aren’t they? Everyone has a story to tell, and within an airport there are many people and many stories to read.  Travellers coming and going, some for business, some for pleasure.

I’m travelling for work and find myself sitting in the Gordon Ramsey restaurant in Terminal 5 at the Heathrow Airport just watching people.


I can see a man sitting at a table with a young lady.  They’re sharing a bottle of champagne.  He must be in his 60s, her likely in her 20s.  Is she his mistress? Girlfriend? Colleague?  A short while later, he touches her leg, I can see that under the table.  I rule out the colleague.

Everyone has a story.


I get a lot of my ideas for characters from sitting in public places and watching people.  Coffee shops for example are brilliant…

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2 thoughts on “People watching can be good for your writing!

  1. My hobby? People watching definitely! because people are interesting and because I am deeply curious about what drives us all to say and do the things we do and because like you say, if I hope to be a better writer (perhaps even a better person) I have to ingest all the minutiae, all the little details of everyday exchanges for authentic writing, for clarity…

  2. People watching can be interesting and eye-opening. Sometimes what we feel is weird or quirky about ourselves, we can see that many others do the same. Makes you wonder what else is in common.

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