I get quite a few people ask me how I create the people in my books, why I have imagined them one way and not another. Sometimes my answer is simple, they just came to me and that’s how they have stayed or other times I may have to research people online e.g on Google to see what celebrities are out there that most connect with the person I want to portray. I use celebrities simply because they are easy to find plus those are the most likely people to appear in films and they portray many different types of characters, so honestly they are easy to use. I find that if I have watched them in a film or a T.V programme I can hear their voice, which becomes my characters voice so its easy to write their story down because I can hear what it is they need to tell me.
But I also like to use pictures of celebrities or people from hair magazines and cut them out and place them in my notebook so if I need to look back in my notebook to re connect with the character I can. With my series ‘Alone’ it was essential I kept pictures as lots of characters came and went and trying to remember what they looked like off the top of my head without reading my own novel over again when I needed to talk about them was hard, so I make sure every character has their own profile now.
My Character profile normally looks like this.
Profile picture and name…Stacie…Age at start of books in ‘Alone’ 17…Age in next book ‘Lone’ 22…Age in the last book 23 as she will have a birthday but it might not be a celebration. (Although I have used a drawn picture of mine here I actually see Stacie to look like Avril Lavinge) And I gave Stacie Blonde hair partially because I am naturally blonde but change my hair like the weather but also because in a lot of books and films the main heronine or female lead is normally Brunette and I wanted to make a change to that. Blondes can be cool too 😉 Plus the Blonde hair will make a reference to something in the last book in the series.
Hair colour…Blonde. Eye Colour…Green.
Family…Sister is Tanya…Mother is Paige…Father is Kieran…Nephew is Cain.
Becomes good friends with, Monique, Ollie, Callum, Albi and Kaley.
Special Abilities…Was infected by a Crusher and with the crazy doctors ‘Cure’ it has bonded the virus with her blood so she is now half human, half Creature. She has heightened senses, is fast and strong, can command the Crushers to do her bidding telepathically and can summon claws to fight with through her hands. Although this has saved her life on many occasions it is also a burden and inside it is pulling her apart and sending her crazy.
About…She lived in Bidborough in Kent with her family in a two bed council house. Although the war had been harsh on her and her family they were green fingered and grew their own food to survive. She has always been quite a strong person mentally which is seen at the beginning of ‘Alone’ when her mother turns trying to kill her dad and she has to save him by stopping her. She carries on being strong helping her sister till things go wrong. She is very strong willed and keeps to a target she sets in her mind and tries hard to keep promises. With a high sense of trying to do good and help others all the time this gets her into a few problems along the way which she might have been able to avoid if she didn’t want to help people and although it has made her even stronger it has also made her sceptical about certain things and inside it has disturbed her mentally to the point her body and mind struggles to cope.
Aim for the end of the series…To save the world!!! Like most hero’s and heroines.
I find keeping a profile really helps me define a character and I can compare them to others. Seeing who they would be compatible with. I have whole folders at home filled with character profiles, notebooks for important notes, first drafts and drawings I have made all for the purpose of keeping my imagination alive and so I don’t forget things, which if you have kids like me is common as I have baby brain even though my youngest is toddling and not quite a baby now.
I haven’t just done this for ‘Alone’ I have about 6 ‘WIP’s’ and they all have their own dedicated notebook and folder. I think soon I may have to rent a bigger house to store them all in.
Hope this helps people to maintain a log about their characters, especially as computers may save things but it isn’t always…SAFE…e.g Crashing…But in conclusion (Trying to sound smart here) I find Character profiles and Character logs are indeed important…At least to me.