Persona Worksheet

Table of Contents 1. NAME..........................................................................................................................................2 2. TIME PERIOD ...........................................................................................................................2 3. STATION IN LIFE .....................................................................................................................2 4. BIRTH FAMILY.........................................................................................................................3 5. MARITAL FAMILY...................................................................................................................5 6. HONOURARY FAMILY............................................................................................................5 7. FRIENDSHIP..............................................................................................................................6 8. CHILDHOOD..............................................................................................................................6 9. EDUCATION..............................................................................................................................7 10. CURRENT LOCALE................................................................................................................7 11. BIRTHPLACE ..........................................................................................................................8 12. OTHER PLACES OF RESIDENCE.........................................................................................8 13. FLORA AND FAUNA..............................................................................................................9 14. HOME........................................................................................................................................9 15. HOUSEHOLD.........................................................................................................................10 16. DAILY LIFE............................................................................................................................11 17. OCCUPATION........................................................................................................................12 18. CLOTHING.............................................................................................................................13 19. FOOD.......................................................................................................................................14 20. LEISURE.................................................................................................................................15 21. ENTERTAINMENT................................................................................................................15 22. HYGIENE AND GROOMING...............................................................................................16 23. ILLNESS AND INJURY.........................................................................................................16 24. HOSPITALITY........................................................................................................................16 25. MEASUREMENTS AND SYSTEMS....................................................................................17 26. PERSONALITY......................................................................................................................18 27. RELIGION...............................................................................................................................18 28. SPIRITUAL BELIEFS............................................................................................................19 29. PERSONAL MORAL CODE..................................................................................................19 30. LIFECYCLE............................................................................................................................19 31. FESTIVALS............................................................................................................................20 32. TRAVEL..................................................................................................................................21 33. MEMORABLE EVENTS AND PEOPLE..............................................................................21 34. LEADERSHIP AND AUTHORITY.......................................................................................22 35. LAW........................................................................................................................................23 36. WAR........................................................................................................................................23 37. HERALDRY............................................................................................................................24 38. WOMEN..................................................................................................................................24 39. SLAVERY...............................................................................................................................24 40. CHARITY................................................................................................................................25 41. WORLDVIEW........................................................................................................................25

1. NAME
What is your name? How did you get your name? Why were you given that name? What does it mean? How would you be addressed by non-family members of equal rank? Higher rank? Lower rank?

2. TIME PERIOD
What year is it? When were you born? Are you considered a child, an adult, or elderly?

3. STATION IN LIFE
What station or class are you of? Is this the same as the station or class you were born to? Is it likely to change in the future? Are you wealthy, poor? Is this likely to change? Are you of the same people as those around you? If not, of what people are you? How does that effect how the people around you treat you? If you are, who is around you that are not of your people? What people are they of? Do you interact with them? How do you treat them? Is your treatment of them culturally dictated or a personal decision?

4. BIRTH FAMILY
Who is your father? What is his name? When was he born? Where was he born? Is he still living? If not, when did he die? If he died, how did that affect you? What was/is his social position? Occupation? Did your father help raise you? What did you learn from him as a child? What is he like? What is your father's family like? How did his family help or hinder you in your life? Who is your mother? What is her name? When was she born? Where was she born? Is she still living? If not, when did she die? If she died, how did that affect you? What was/is her social position? Occupation? Did she raise you? What did you learn from her as a child? What is she like? What is your mother's family like? How did her family help or hinder you in your life? What does your father's family think of your mother's family, and vice versa?

Are your parents married? Is their marriage happy? What did you learn from their marriage? Do you have brothers and sisters? Are they still alive? What do they do? Do you have a favourite, and why? Do you have any siblings you dislike, and why? Are any of them half-siblings? Who are they? What is the relationship between you and them like, and why? Did you know your grandparents, and what were they like? What other relatives do you have in your extended family/clan/kin group? How closely do you live/associate with them? (e.g. Do you live or work with them? If not do they live close by or are they scattered around?) Is there anyone in your extended family that is personally important to you? Why? (e.g. Did any of them have an important role in your upbringing, or in your current life?) Are they still alive? If not, when did they die? If they died, how did that affect you? What was/is their social position? Occupation? Do you have a favourite relative? Who and why? Are they still alive? If not, when did they die? If they died, how did that affect you? What was/is their social position? Occupation? Whom in your family do you dislike and why? Are you still in contact with any of your family?

5. MARITAL FAMILY
Are/were you married? To whom? Are/were you happy in your marriage? What is their occupation? How does this affect you? What are the names of your spouse's near relatives? Is this your first spouse? If not, did the previous spouse die, or are you divorced, and what were the circumstances? Do you have children? Are they related to your current spouse? Do they still reside with you? If not, where are they? What do they do? What is the structure of the family/clan/tribe? Are children raised at home or fostered elsewhere? How many generations of your family are you really aware of? How important is knowledge of your lineage? How is sex outside of marriage viewed? The offspring of such a relationship? Do you have a lover who is not your spouse? Have you ever had one? Who are/were they?

6. HONOURARY FAMILY
Do you have any family who are honorary as opposed to birth or spousal? What is their relationship to you? (Godparents/children, Foster family, adoptive, etc) How did you come to be associated with them?

What role did they have in your upbringing, or in your current life? Are they still alive? If not, when did they die? If they died, how did that affect you? What was/is their social position? Occupation? What are the customs associated with honorary family in your culture?

7. FRIENDSHIP
Presumably you have friends. Who are they? How did you meet them? Become friends with them? Where do they live? What do you do together?
Are their wealth and/or rank similar or different to yours?

8. CHILDHOOD
What was your daily life like as an infant? As a child? What tasks were you set to do? What kind of toys did you play with? Where did you get them? Where did you play? With whom did you play? With whom do you live? Who were your neighbours? Were there distinct stages of childhood acknowledged in your society?

At what point did you stop being considered a child?

9. EDUCATION
How were you educated (formally, informally, a mix of both)? What language(s) can you speak? Can you read or write? Did you go to school? What did you study that was directly applicable to your life and the people around you? What did you study that was not directly applicable to your life (e.g., Classical Greek History, if you’re a 1600's English lady of minor nobility)? How did you learn to do your work? Who taught you? What is your level of education compared to those around you?

10. CURRENT LOCALE
What country do you live in? What part of the country? How did you get here? What is your first memory of this place? What is the climate like? What is the terrain like? Can you describe life in general in this place? Who are the people who live in this place? Who are the people who travel to or through here? What kinds of structures would you find there?

What kinds of monuments or place-markers? What kinds of crops are grown? Are there areas where it is not safe for you to go? Is it always not safe, or only sometimes? What is the largest road and where does it go? Where is the nearest market? What do the things you typically buy there cost? The nearest church or cathedral? Nearest waterway? Is it navigable and how? What is your capital? How far is it to the capital city? (in units of measure your persona would have used?) Have you ever been there?

11. BIRTHPLACE
Where were you born? Why were you born there? If you lived there long enough to remember it, what was it like there? (See CURRENT LOCALE, FLORA AND FAUNA, HOME, HOUSEHOLD and DAILY LIFE for additional questions you may want to answer for this section as well)

12. OTHER PLACES OF RESIDENCE
What other places have you lived other than where you were born and where you live now? Why were you living there? Are any of these places additional residences to your current residence (i.e. multiple homes/properties in your family)?

(See CURRENT LOCALE, FLORA AND FAUNA, HOME, HOUSEHOLD and DAILY LIFE for additional questions you may want to answer for this section as well)

13. FLORA AND FAUNA
What trees grow where you live? What plants grow wild? Which ones are useful? Which ones are hazardous? What wild animals live near you? What kinds of birds? What kinds of fish? Which ones are hunted/fished for food? How is this done? What use do you make of these animals beyond food? What pests do you have to deal with?

14. HOME
Are you from a city, village, manor, or farm? What kind of building do you live in? How big is it? How many rooms? What does it look like outside? What does it look like inside? What is your house built of? Who built it? What is your house furnished with? Who made it/ where did you get it?

How do you keep warm/cool? Where do you eat, sleep and work? What part of it do you spend most of your time in? What is your favourite place in or around your home? What do you do there? What is it like at night? What do you do then? Where are the places around your home that you would never go to if you could help it? What does your favourite chair look like? What do you sleep on? What do you see when you wake up in the morning? How do you light your house? What do you use for storage? Do you have any pets? Do they have a function in the house? Where do they live? What domesticated animals live on your property? Where do they live? Who cares for them? What function do they serve? What are they worth at market? Who owns the house you live in? The land it is on?

15. HOUSEHOLD
Who lives in your house besides you and your immediate family? What is their relationship to you?

What is your position within the household hierarchy? Are there any people who are living with you who are not members of your family, but are not staff? Who are the household servants that you see every day? What do they do? What do you think of them? How do they interact with you? How are they paid? Are they paid? What social obligations do you have to them? Are there military retainers to your family? Who are they? What do they do? What do you think of them? How do they interact with you? How are they paid? What obligations do you have to them? Do you have any religious personnel associated with your family? Who are they? What do they do? What do you think of them? What are your obligations to them?

16. DAILY LIFE
What time do you awaken?

Where and how do you prepare for your day? What household tasks are yours? What do the other people in your house do? What do you use to accomplish those tasks? What household items do you make yourselves? What do you buy? (Not just food or small wares like combs or bowls, but also furniture, clothing, etc.) What are these items made from? If you make them, where do you get the raw materials and tools? Do you derive any income by selling surplus from your daily tasks (eg, if you spin more thread than you use, do you sell any of it to the local weavers) Where do you get water for your household? How do you light the fire?

17. OCCUPATION
What do you do? Where does your money come from? How much wealth have you got? What do you do with it? Do you have a job outside your household duties? Do you work for yourself? Your family? An employer (and if so, who)? Does anyone work for you? What are your daily responsibilities in this occupation? Do these activities vary seasonally, and if so, why? How do you get paid?

What tools do you use in your daily work? Where do these tools come from? What raw materials does your trade require, and where do they come from? Do you sell what you produce, and if so to whom and for what value? Are you part of a professional organization or an independent worker? What is your standing within that professional organization? If you are a member of the landed aristocracy, then how do you manage your property? Your household? Your family interests? Do you have other occupations besides land-owner? Are you satisfied with your current place in your society? Why? If you wanted to change it, how would you do so?

18. CLOTHING
What do you wear? How do you obtain or make your clothing? What steps in the process are you involved in? How do you clean it? What is your clothing made of? What does the cloth look like? How is it embellished? Do you have different kinds of clothing (everyday vs. special occasions)? What are the differences between what you wear in warm weather and in cold weather? Do you wear underwear? What kind? How do you care for your clothes?

Do you have many clothes? What jewellery/accessories do you wear, and what are they made from? What kind of shoes do you wear? What do you wear on your head? How do you carry small personal objects around? How do you carry large things? Are there any restrictions on what you can wear? Who imposes those restrictions?

19. FOOD
What meals do you eat? When? What is your typical daily menu? Does your menu change during the year? How & where do you get what you eat? How is your food prepared & preserved? How is it served? What spices do you use? Are they imported? Are they expensive? What do you drink from? What do you eat off of? What utensils do you use? Are there special foods at various times of year? Why are they special, and why are they served at that time? What are the rules of proper etiquette at the table? What special dietary restrictions or requirements do you have?

20. LEISURE
What do you do for fun? If it requires a learned skill, where did you learn it? If it requires equipment, what kind? Where do you get it? Is music played/sung in more informal settings (like while going about daily work)? What stories do your people tell? To whom do the stories belong? Who can tell them? What kinds of ‘table’ games do your people play? What kinds of physical games do your people play? Who plays them?

21. ENTERTAINMENT
What entertainments are available to you? Do you provide entertainment for others? How? What kind of music is common in your culture? Where and when is it performed? Who performs it? What instruments are played? Who plays them? What stories do your people tell? To whom do the stories belong? Who can tell them?
Do you or anyone in your household create any kind of visual art (e.g. embroider/weave wall hangings, paint, carve, or sculpt, etc.)?

Are visual arts in your culture integrated into functional items, e.g. decoration on primarily functional items (like designs on everyday items), or primarily decorative items with functional purposes (tapestries which can also be to prevent drafts, for propaganda)? Are there any forms of art common which have little or no functional purpose other than pure decorative value?

22. HYGIENE AND GROOMING
How do you keep clean? How often do you bathe? How do you clean your teeth? Where do you "go to the bathroom"? How is waste disposed of? How do you wear your hair? What daily grooming habits do you practice? What frequent but not daily ones? Which ones rarely (for special occasions, or once-in-a-lifetime)? What do your grooming and hygiene implements look like?

23. ILLNESS AND INJURY
What kind of medical care is available to you? For injuries? Illnesses? Who provides your medical care? Do you supply medical care for others? What happens to people with handicaps?

24. HOSPITALITY

Do you ever have guests? Who are they? How long do they typically stay? What obligations do you have to a guest in your house? What obligations do you have as a guest in another’s house? Does this change depending on which of you are higher in rank? How? What obligations do you have to itinerant travellers? What gift-giving customs does your culture practice? What sort of gifts? To whom? What feasting traditions are practiced? Who holds feast? Who attends them? To whom would you offer patronage? Or be offered patronage by?

25. MEASUREMENTS AND SYSTEMS
What is the local system of money? What other currencies or systems of trade/commerce do you use? What units of measurement are used by the people of your area for: Distance: Length: Weight: Volume: Cooking: Temperature: What calendar do you use? By what method do you reckon the time of day?

26. PERSONALITY
What kind of person are you generally? How do you see yourself? How do others see you? What particular skills do you have that aren’t necessarily related to your occupation? What is the one thing about your life you love the most? What is the one thing you most dislike? What is your fondest memory? What do you wish you could forget? How do you deal with conflict within your family? Your community? Who do you consider the wisest person you know? Why? Do you try to emulate them? What are some of your goals in life that you have yet to achieve? That you have already achieved?

27. RELIGION
What is your religion? What are your daily religious practices? Which are frequent, but not daily? Which are rare or once-in-a-lifetime? Why do you practice this religion? Is it important in your life? What objects do you have in your house or on your person that are connected to your religious beliefs? Does everyone around you practice the same religion?

How does that affect you? What church/religious space is closest to your house? Who is your religious leader/advisor? Who is the head of your religion, if any? Are you part of your religion’s hierarchy in any way?

28. SPIRITUAL BELIEFS
What superstitions and beliefs about the occult or otherworld do you have? What behaviours and customs do you practice as a result of these beliefs? What superstitions do you have and why? What behaviours and customs do you practice as a result of these fears?

29. PERSONAL MORAL CODE
Do you follow an external moral code, religious or social? Do you have a personal moral code? What is it? Does it agree or go in opposition that of the society around you? How rigidly do you adhere to your moral code?

30. LIFECYCLE
Where was your mother when she gave birth to you? (Specifically- e.g.: in home, hospital, etc.) Who assisted her? What was done with you immediately after birth? Over the next 24 hrs? The next week?

What rites of passage have you undergone during your life? What rites of passage do you have yet to undergo? If married, how old were you when you married? How was the marriage arranged? Why? What bride price or dowry did your marriage entail/do you expect to have provided or receive? Where was the marriage performed? By whom? When you die, what will be done with your body? (Rituals and actual disposal of body) How will your body be prepared? Who will prepare your body? What, if anything, will accompany your body in its final disposal? How will you be mourned and/or memorialized by your family and community? For how long? (e.g. memorial markers, visiting of remains, practices related to honouring or interceding on behalf of deceased family members, etc.) Will this differ, depending on how you die? How? How are children viewed in your society? Pregnacy? How are the elderly viewed in your society? How long do people typically live in your social class? What are the most common causes of death?

31. FESTIVALS
What celebrations and festivals are observed? When do these occur, and what do they celebrate? Where do they occur, and do you have to travel to attend or are they held nearby? How do you prepare for these festivals?

What do you do at or for these festivals?

32. TRAVEL
Have you travelled? Where? What were the circumstances? How did you prepare for the journey? How did you travel? What did you see on the way? When you got there? Where did you stay while travelling? When you got there? What did you eat on the journey? When you got there? What stories can you tell about your travels when you get back home? How will the folks back home receive these stories?

33. MEMORABLE EVENTS AND PEOPLE
Have any events made a profound difference in your life? (natural disasters, wars, plagues) In your parents’ life? Your grandparents? Have you witnessed or taken part in any important events? Who are the most famous people of your day and age? What is the most distant land you know of? Who are the heroes (contemporary, historical, or legendary) of your people? Who is/are the most renowned thinker/philosophers of your day? Of the recent past? Of the distant past?

34. LEADERSHIP AND AUTHORITY
What form of political system do you live under? Who is your highest secular ruler/leader? Who rules the local area you live in? What obligations are owed to you by those in authority? What obligations do you have to them? What does your society believe is the basis of their authority? If you were to meet them, how would you behave? Do you support those who rule you? Or are you in rebellion against them? Do you question authority figures around you? How do you do this? Are there various political factions at the level of local authority? At higher levels? What are those factions? Which faction, if any, are you part of or support? Openly or in secret? Which does your family support? Openly or in secret? What might make you or your family change their allegiance? Are you or your family involved in any family/clan alliances or conflicts? Are there any political or religious movements in your area that seek to counter or change the status quo? Are you involved or do you support any of them? Openly or in secret? Are any of your family involved or do they support any of them? Openly or in secret? Do you hold authority over anyone? Who? Why? How do you wield this authority? Has anyone in your family? How did you/they come by this authority?

Are you involved in the political system of your home country/region in any non-governing capacity (Ambassador, spy, hostage, bureaucrat, etc.)? If so, does this position involve any authority? Over whom, and from where/who does it derive? How is it exercised? Does your position in society give you influence over governing authority in some non-official manner (e.g. member of family or household/staff of governing authority, well-known scholar, etc.)? Who rules the neighbouring peoples? Are you allies or enemies? How do you feel it is best to relate to these neighbouring people?

35. LAW
What kind of legal system do you live in? Who makes the laws? What happens to those who break them? How does this affect you? Why do people become or not become criminals?

36. WAR
How have you been affected by warfare? Do you fight? Under what circumstances? Who taught you to fight? What armour and weapons do your people use? Do you personally use? How do people of your time & place get weapons and armour? What kind of military service does your region require, and to whom?

37. HERALDRY
What is the heraldry of your ruler? Your local lord? Do you have heraldry? What is it? Why is that your heraldry? Do you have a motto?

38. WOMEN
What is the legal status of women among your people? Can they own land or property? What trades can they enter? Can they conduct business? What legal or social connection did they have with their birth family after marriage? What is the legal status of children among your people?

39. SLAVERY
Are there slaves in your culture? Where do they come from? How are they treated? Can they be freed? How? What do they do? Do you own any? Does your household?

40. CHARITY
Do you give charity? Why? What do you give? To whom?

41. WORLDVIEW
How does your society view: Dreams Magic Love Allegiance to authority The Body The Self (non-physical) The surrounding landscape The stars The Earth, and its place in the Universe? What virtues are valued? Why? What faults are reviled? Why? What are the biggest social problems of your society? In the wider world?

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