If you’ve been writing for a while, this will be old information. But, I think it’s worth repeating.
In each story, there should be a range of characters with different voices, traits, and personalities.
In YOU’RE BUSTING MY NUPTIALS,(due for release Sept. 1) I have three female friends with many scenes together, so each needed distinct differences, or they would all be just Texas-twang-talking girls.
They are all attractive. I have a hard time writing characters who aren’t. They are all the same age. Tizzy and Rayann are white. Synola is black.
In order to have a contrast between them, I wrote Synola as sassy, Rayann as a fraidy-cat, and Tizzy as the voice of reason.
For me, Synola is my favorite. I love her sassy mouth, especially when she talks to her semi-love interest, Jinx. Plus, with her I get to write a lot of Texas talk in her dialogue.
I admit I have trouble writing unlikable characters. I’d rather they be funny, silly, or a little dense. Of course, we shouldn’t be afraid to embrace characters with bad behavior or bad habits. Troubled people are more interesting than perfect individuals.
If you write thrillers, suspense, horror, or mysteries, it’s easier to make characters bad-to-the-bone and ugly. And, sometimes they will still be likeable. Think back on some movies you’ve seen.
Charles Bronson comes to mind. (Gee, that shows my age) He wasn’t good-looking and in many of his movies, he took the law into his own hands, yet fans couldn’t help but like him.
But in ROMANCE, readers want to fantasize about the main characters, so they need to be flawless. That’s the beauty of fiction. We can make our leading ladies beautiful, thin, rich and smart. Everything we’re not.
And of course, the men of romance will be handsome, sexy, buff, and just the most desirable men on the face of the earth.
Along the way, we need to give characters plenty of obstacles to overcome. Plus, we have to make them want whatever is beyond that roadblock—- and want it bad. They’ve got to be willing to risk everything to get it.
Unlike other genres, romance novels are predictable. We know how they will turn out, but it’s the journey along the way that keeps us hooked.
In the end, they must live happily-ever-after. We want the fairy tale ending we’ve read about since we were children. Funny how that never changes.
Do you write odd characters? I’d love to hear about them.