Oh man. Yesterday I finally got to reading some blogs and I found out something interesting. There’s going to be a new book in Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series. But she won’t just be adding more to the story. Nope.
It’s a gender swap. Not sure if that’s what it’s called, but basically Bella and Edward will be renamed and switch places. So that Meyer can prove that Bella was just a “human in distress” and not a damsel in distress. I’ll sum up my thoughts: , “Um, why?”.
We know why, of course. Money. For everyone involved. And didn’t E.L. James just do something similar with Grey? She didn’t switch the characters completely, but she did switch perspectives.
Are you looking forward to this new book by Stephenie Meyer?
I’ve been thinking of this post for a few weeks now. I think I may have been watching a Narnia movie when I came up with it. Pretty sure. Anyway, I want you to do something for me. Get off your phone or computer or whatever for just a minute. Now think of some books with ridiculous battle sequences. They don’t even have to be actual battles. Maybe a particular character or two or ten is embarking on an unknown journey and knows a fight’s ahead. Or maybe a character has been told not to examine something further. A battle can be any sort of conflict for this. Now let me tell you who I’d follow into battle or stand with against the worst of odds.
There are way too many reasons for my eagerness to stand with Katniss through anything for me to list them all here. Like she said in Mockingjay Part 1, she never asked for any of what’s happened to her. If I have to give at least one reason why I’d stand with her, then that’s it. Because she starts off fighting just to stay alive, and for her family. But eventually she embraces who she is and what she has come to represent and fights for so much more than just those immediately around her. She’s the mockingjay. And she’s ready to fight for me. I’d be ready to fight for her.
Don’t tell me I can’t say him if I haven’t read all the books yet. My reasoning for choosing him is because I don’t think he’d ever hesitate to help someone, especially a student in need. But eventually he’s going to find himself in a position in which he can’t get by on his own. And I’d want to be there. So someone could help him for once.
Y’all probably don’t know him as well as the first two selections, but I’ve talked about him a number of times in the past on here. He’s an LA private eye. I would want to be right there next to him as he faces impossible odds because that’s what he always finds himself doing. I’m sure some of you don’t even read detective fiction, but this guy doesn’t just think of his clients as a means to make money. His clients are people in need. And they’ve gone to him for help. And he never lets them down. He refuses to.
John-117 is more than the last of the Spartans left. He’s more than a super soldier. He’s more than a guy in fancy armor. He’s hope. Mankind is on the brink of total annihilation, but it’d be impossible to give up if you get one look at him. Knowing that he’s ready to fight to the death. Knowing that he will never give up. Knowing that he still believes the war can be won. No. He doesn’t make me want to go into shelter and hope that he’ll eventually come through and save humanity. Seeing him makes me want to suit up and grab an assault rifle to stand with him. To fight alongside him. Even knowing the war may never be won.
So those are the four characters I would follow into battle! What about you? Which characters would you stand with?
I’ve been really open about the fact that I love using real people as characters. At least I think I have been. Or perhaps I’ve only said that I like using their names? I don’t remember. Anyway, I think doing so makes for solid characters. Cause at the end of the day you want people to relate to your characters, right? Right. And I’m not saying that my characters are 100 percent biographical when I base a character on a person, but they are a little bit. Maybe I’m just cheating.
For me, we all know that every individual person has their own personality and belief system, so why not transfer that from real life onto the pages of a book? Assuming the person grants you permission, of course. Tell me what could be more fascinating than to have a writer you know ask you if they can base a character on you. It would depend a little bit on the story and a lot on the quality of the writing, but I would be ecstatic. Seeing parts of your odd personality on the pages of a book, how cool would that be? Maybe you have a very distinct laugh. Or maybe you do this thing with your hair in certain situations. Or perhaps you have a shoe obsession. Just small things that anyone can recognize.
The people I’ve chosen to use as characters are all completely different from one another. Gender. Race. Education. Personality. I believe they make for great characters to write, but also to read.
So tell me. have you ever based a character on someone you know?
I’m not talking about characters and their favorite sports to watch, I’m talking about characters and the sports they’ve played at some point in the past. I know not every genre does this, but it seems just about every detective novel I read the MC has played a particular sport at a younger age. I don’t see anything wrong with this, but I’m wondering if it’s just what I read or if it’s a bigger thing.
The two sports I know some of my favorite characters have played/participated in are baseball and boxing. I can think of one character who was a minor league baseball player until injury ended his career. And another character who was the top amateur boxer in his state. Maybe you’ve even read or written a character who still plays a particular sport? I haven’t seen that because after all, how many people are still playing a sport after being done with school.
Have you read or written characters who have played sports?
Photo Credit: YA Highway
If you all haven’t noticed I love my posts to ask you questions about books or writing or publishing or something in between. It gives me a chance to interact with every one of you who chooses to offer your insight. And I do mean insight, because yes I’ve written a book that I love and am working on my second, but I’m always looking for advice on how I can become a better writer and I’ve already gotten so much from you guys just in the last month or so from your comments and feedback. So let’s talk about naming characters, shall we?
There are SO many aspects to a good book, right? The first line. The title. The people who made it happen behind the scenes. The storyline. The dialogue. AND the names of all the characters. I would never go so far as to say any part of writing a book is easy, but writing the actual book is probably the easiest of everything. Somewhere in there we have the difficult task of naming characters. It’s not the most difficult thing you’ll do, but you best believe that it won’t be the easiest.
Honestly, I kind of cheated when it came to naming characters in my first book. Cheated, you’re thinking. How?! Hold your horses. I named several characters and based them, in part, on real people I am lucky enough to know. If you’ve followed my blog since last year then you already know this. My reasoning was that these people are important to me, and their names are already perfect! I mean, I just let their parents do the hard part twenty something years ago. I couldn’t just let a perfect name go to waste. No. That would be bad writing. Here’s a list of some of the character names in my first and second books:
Now this list isn’t exhaustive and I won’t tell you which names I came up with and which ones I didn’t. That makes it more fun. But four of the names are the exact names of people I know. And one is just the first name. I dare you to figure out which ones are not real.
So you know my philosophy, stealing, now I want to know yours. How do you name your characters in your book? And tell me some names you’ve come up with and we can compare!