Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Where Do You Get Your Characters?


Things people ask when they hear I’m a writer and before their eyes glaze over:
- Are you published? (at least now they’ve accepted being published on e-readers)
- where do you get your ideas?
- who are your characters based on?

So, who are your characters based on? Mine come from various places. I usually have a plot in mind first, then I start thinking about the main characters. My latest release, The Fourth Victim – Sara’s Story has seven main characters and two supporting characters plus two villains and a few others. (I know, way too many characters but I couldn’t figure out anyway to cut them).
My idea was to have women helping women from difficult and often potentially fatal situations. So, I came up with three women who meet in university. They become friends. They come different backgrounds but besides getting their degree they had a few things in common. They have access to money and a strong desire to help women. They volunteer at women’s shelters during college and help set up a few new ones. Then they decide to help women from difficult situations and train to do this. They form The Foundation.

I continue to develop and flesh out the characters, maybe there’s a little of my own desire to help women become stronger in there, but the characters aren’t based on any specific person. As they become stronger and more effective, they decide to train other women to do the same thing and more characters are added. All based on my imagination, character check lists and question, and types that would work in that situation – and a little paranormal wouldn’t hurt either. check out The Fourth Victim on my website at https://www.beverleybateman.com

The only time I’ve used people I know is if someone annoys me and I put them in as a character that I can eliminate inn the story.

What about you? Where do your characters come from? Are they based on people you know?

3 comments:

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    1. I love it. Sounds like the perfect way to work.

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  2. I enjoyed basing the main character in my Cealie Gunther cozy series on my squeeze Bob, who would say or do almost anything, and my mom, widowed young and starting to have fun in her seventies. I just signed a contract for LOOKING FOR ROMEO: A New Orleans Love Story, and got the idea and characters for it long ago, when I happened to be in the French Quarter while crowds waited for Harry Connick, Jr., and his new bride to come out of St. Louis Cathedral. Then the carriages (theirs white), pink and red paper hearts tossed at the couple.... Fun!

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