Authors often talk about how characters take over their own stories, and what they thought they were writing goes an entirely different way. It is true that characters do become very real to me when I’m in the middle of a story. Often, if a scene isn’t working, it’s because I’m writing something that just isn’t right for the character. So this week on Romance Writers Weekly, I posed the following challenge:
Choose a character from one of your books (published or WIP) to answer the following five questions.
I decided to go with Jo, from Gateway Crescent. She’s the youngest of the three Bendixon Sisters, and was great fun to write. Here are her answers.
What's your favourite word?
This might reinforce Mattie and Camryn’s opinion of me, but I think it is “new.” There’s so much potential in that word. The start of something is always the most exciting. And if something is new, that usually means I’m learning, and I’ve always loved to learn.
What is your fondest childhood memory?
Hmm, that’s a tough one. I think it was my ninth birthday. I’m eight years younger than Camryn, and six years younger than Mattie. We got along pretty well, considering, but they often did things together that left me out. Well, this particular birthday, their gift to me was an entire day together. We went shopping in the morning (Camryn’s idea) and she bought me this awesome dress with her own money. Then in the afternoon Mattie took us to the pool and we went down the slides and jumped off diving boards and had so much fun. It wasn’t long before Camryn went away to university, so I think it was extra special because I didn’t see her as much after that.
What one thing in your past do you wish you could do differently?
This is going to sound weird, but I wish I’d discovered computer coding sooner. It wasn’t on my radar in high school, mostly because only the smartest kids took that class, and I let that scare me away. But coding is about solving problems and thinking with creative logic and making things work, and if I’d only known how much it would hook me I would have started much sooner with it.
Vanilla or Chocolate?
I assume we’re talking ice cream? Then vanilla. Because you can add anything to it and make it different every time.
If you could have lunch with one famous person (alive or not) who would it be and why?
Joni Mitchell. I’m not alone in thinking she’s one of the great songwriters of all time, and is an icon not just in Canada but around the world. She’s listed as the sole producer on most of her albums, plus she designed most of the covers for them. That’s an amazingly talented woman who knows what she wants and is willing to work for it. I’d like a little of that to rub off on me. Beside, she was part of one of the most dynamic and influential periods of music, and must have some awesome stories to tell.
I hope you enjoyed a small look into Jo’s world. I don’t know who was more surprised – her or me – when a minor character in Mattie and Marcus’ story turned out to the love interest for Jo. Luke is steady where Jo is flighty, committed where she is indecisive – and the last person Jo thought she’d fall in love with. I hope you enjoy their story as much as I did writing it. If you're interested, it is available for pre-order right now for only 99 cents! Links are here.
Now, hop over to A.S. Fenichel and see how her character answered the same questions!