Characters pt. 1

I’m not an artist, the picture was done by Karis.  Also, this post has spoilers for The Lost Isle, and while I’m aware that no one besides Karis, Caroline, and my family knows them already, I have no idea whether or not it will ever be released. And I’ve lost my train of thought. Did that even make sense? Sorry… spoiler alert. 😉

Characters. They are, in essence, the true writers of every story. So long as they are fully developed, they are people as real to the story as we are to our own: They have their own likes and dislikes, vocabularies, morals, et cetera.

One of my favorite things to do as a writer is to watch the form. They begin as a concept, accessories to the plotline, but over time they change. The first draft never portrays them correctly because while it is being written the author still is getting to know them. By now, at the second draft of the first book (and, hmm hmm, first draft of the second), I still learn about them but they are far more familiar to me.

Take my character, Melissa- the one I feel I know the best. At the beginning of the first draft, she was to narrate the whole book. That soon changed to accommodate multiple points of view, but my thoughts remained firmly on her. Who was she as a person? The first and second iterations of the story saw her as quite flat- simply the friend of Annemarie, the main character of the four. She and Julia went about life with smiles on their faces and an oh-don’t-worry-I-can-totally-take-more-craziness mindset. As I went about it, this time, I found myself inadvertently putting more and more of myself into her.

She has curly brown hair. She loves the idea of traveling and seeing new places, but not the in-between time. She’s quiet about her preferences, especially when it comes to relationships because to have what she wanted would be to alienate her best friend. The last thing that she wants to do is hurt anyone. I’ve found that in many ways we are similar, and while there are times that that is fun and cool and whatever, there are certainly times when my heart aches for shame at what I’ve given her to deal with. I’ve given her a lot to deal with.

Julia is impulsive. She has a fiery personality, a layer of protection against the memories of her early years caring for her mad father. She is a hopeless romantic, always liking someone but never actually dating. This makes her especially receptive to Tevon’s advances, once they reach Iona. However despite her faults, Julia is very strong. She is assertive when she needs to be, and quite good about getting the point across- I feel like out of all four, she is the most likely to cement a change into the system.

Melissa and Julia are the two friends of Annemarie and Brandon, the couple Iteration 1 (cringe- a lot) was centered around. They were the two third wheels (is that possible) yet they didn’t act like it at all. Now, as characters with subplots of their own, I wonder how I could possibly have missed them. They are so much fun to write…


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