So a while back, Writer Unboxed posted about how authors tend to have "casts" of characters that they reuse in every story: sort of like archetypes, but dependent on the author. I thought I might talk about the cast of characters I have, at least as far as I can tell. I shall give appropriate examples from my books, even though all y'all haven't read them yet.
Heroic Good Girl: The name pretty much covers it. Most of my MCs are like this. Heroic, sweet, intelligent, often struggling with a lack of confidence or mental instability. Recent MCs have been less on the heroic side, more on the human, but it's the same idea. Examples: Kaela Timberley from Perished, Augusta Regna from The Ice Enchantress's Plot, Cecily Garcia from Coca. Jedrek of Nereth in The Prophecy Keeper is a male example.
Good Guy Love Interest: My love interests tend to run on the Peeta side, though perhaps not quite so awesome. Generally artistically talented, sometimes with a sportsy side, compassionate, supportive. Examples: Nicholas Lewis from What It Takes to Deal, Henry West from Coca, Alex Stevenson from Merciful. Occasionally, fathers will manifest with these traits as well. Suzanne's father in What It Takes to Deal fits this.
Miss Sassafras: Sometimes I'll pull in an MC, female love interest, or best friend who runs more on the Elizabeth Bennet side of Jane Austen--bit sassy and much better at standing up for herself, but with the same good heart and intelligence. Usually less unstable or emotional than Heroic Good Girl. Examples: Suzanne Clever from What It Takes to Deal, Nadia of Nereth from The Prophecy Keeper, Fay Ann Cohen from The Last Hope. Augusta's brothers in The Ice Enchantress's Plot are male iterations of this character.
Sir Anti-Hero: Every once in a while, like with Miss Sassafras, I'll mix things up by writing a male love interest who's more of the bad boy. Generally more conflicted than dark. Examples: Bodi the Wanderer from The Prophecy Keeper, Jason Owens from The Last Hope, Micah Archontis from What It Takes to Deal.
Younger Sibling with Needs: Plenty of books have the younger sibling figure who needs taking care of, and so do mine. Examples: Melissa Regna from The Ice Enchantress's Plot, Max Goade from Merciful. An adult example might be Nicholas's mother in What It Takes to Deal.
Mysterious Motherly Mentor: Often a redhead thanks to my own mother's influence, this character takes on the mentor position in many of my novels. She always has an aspect to her that's not quite understood by the main character, except maybe towards the end of the book. Examples: Time from The Last Hope, Suzanne's mother in What It Takes to Deal, the Queen in The Ice Enchantress's Plot. One male iteration is the Keeper in The Prophecy Keeper, who also took on traits of the fatherly Good Guy.
Absentee Father: Fairly often, a negative figure will appear in the form of the father. Sometimes downright cruel, usually just neglectful and unprepared to be a father. Examples: Danae's father in Merciful, Cecily's father in Coca, Jedrek's father in The Prophecy Keeper. Winston from that book also somewhat fits this bill.
Sexual Harassment Guy: Though this male character sometimes doesn't commit any act of sexual harassment, he exists as a threatening or unwanted figure to the main character because of romantic/sexual advances. Examples: Zachary Brown in Coca, Prince Delmont in Perished, Carter LeBlanc in Merciful.
Confused and Misunderstood Villain: My central villains tend to come in two types. This is the first: a villain who meant to do good, is actually decently noble at heart, but through mental instability or confused logic becomes the antagonist and does great damage. Examples: Dr. Ahrens in The Last Hope, Coca in Coca. Most of Kaela's hometown takes on this role in Perished, and Danae's father in Merciful also plays into this.
Evil McEvil: Because I'm religious, I do plenty times use the more Satan-esque, epic fantasy, total evil villain. They exist as evil incarnate, a mortal representation of darkness, sometimes motivated by power but other times just totally unnatural. Examples: Serisk in The Ice Enchantress's Plot, the Shaid in The Prophecy Keeper, the demons in Merciful. Though not depicted in the main story, Luther is a figure mentioned in Perished who also fits this.
That was pretty cool! If I think of any others, I'll made an edit here, but for right now, that covers basically all my cast. What about you other writers? Or for readers, can you see a cast for your favorite authors? Thanks for reading and I'll see you Saturday for our October humor post!
Image via litreactor.com.
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