Sunday, July 15, 2018

Creating Characters

The writing process fascinates me. I’ve just finished writing my sixth mystery novel and I’m still in awe of how bits and pieces from my life and lots of other sources come together to form a book. Sometimes, it’s easy to figure out where ideas come from; other times it’s not. When an idea comes to me seemingly from “out of the blue,” I look up and say, “Thank You,” because I believe in giving credit where credit is due.

My favorite part of writing is creating characters. People and psychology have always fascinated me. My Malone mysteries have been described as “character driven” and my new cozy mystery, Secrets in Storyville, which is separate from my series, is also character driven. A house may have been the inspiration for the book but the characters quickly became the most important element to me.

So, how did I come up with the characters for my new book? Like all of writing, it was a process. 

Kate, my main character, is based on someone I once knew who was the single mother of a young daughter. But that’s where the similarity ends. The two women are nothing alike in appearance or personality and they “live” totally different lives. 

The other characters in the book were each created to fulfill a need in the plot. Kate’s parents and grandmother who are hiding a secret, her daughter, Mandy, the people Kate works with, several of the town’s residents and the man Kate meets and falls in love with all play a part in the mystery.

I hope you enjoy getting to know the characters in Secrets in Storyville as much as I enjoyed creating and writing about them.