I love the semi-colon; I freely admit it. I love the fact that I know how and when (and when not) to use it. But even I have been struck by how often I find myself using it in my current book; and that has started me thinking about the voice of my central character.
Clearly, the use of the semi-colon implies that he qualifies what he says a lot, that he's keen to back up his assertions, that he makes sure that we know what he's talking about. He's not a self-confident character but he has pretensions to being a thinking person.
And this got me thinking - what grammatical devices would other kinds of character use?
The gossip – parentheses (constantly remembering and inserting extraneous information) and lots of double inverted commas (reporting what other people 'honestly said'!!) And exclamation marks.
The bully – imperatives, statements, challenging questions. What do you mean, no they don't? Of course they do.
The chronically uncertain person – ellipsis.... probably. Because they don't want to impose.... they're not quite... sure...
The person who can't shut up – sentences strung together with and and but and then and so and because and if and when and so on and so on.
OK, your turn...