Becoming the Character

What shall your character be? Him/herself or You?

When I write, I create a character I like and I attempt to get the history and uniqueness of the character down. (I usually write romance so most of the story is from the woman’s point of view) I set out the cast of characters, placing them just so, and I start writing with my idea.

But then, no matter what I do, no matter how different I’ve made the gal, suddenly I am the gal.   Her emotions are mine, her goals are usually mine, though I do attempt to escape that and make her different. She shouldn’t be an insecure nut when she’s a photographer, should she?   She doesn’t need blonde hair again, does she?  Seriously now, does she have to love books?

And yet, no matter what I try, a part of me, or more than a part of me becomes the character. 

I was extremely bad there for a while when all my heroines were blonde, blue-eyed, writer/reader/romantics.  I’ve gotten a bit better about changing hair color, though I do tend to lean towards blonde. What can I say, I’m proud of my hair and I like it. So I like to share it. 

I’ve even started ideas/stories with a blank name for the heroine, only to add a variation of my name. 

Guys seem so much easier to write about.  And it’s very easy to say I don’t become them. I can make them anything I want.   A fighter, a hotel manager, a photographer, a publishing house owner, a colonel on a space station, etc.  No prob. (please ignore that half of them are tall, dark, and handsome)

Maybe because I can’t add in all the insecurities that I feel I have, so women had, that’s why I can sometimes write about a guy, and have him different from the last.

But I am my character, and my character is me.  Until I can break that hold I have on her, I won’t ever get anything published, or heck, just written.  I’ll just be my heroine.

Anyways, does anyone else become their character?  Does your hero or heroine inspire you?

Writing on

~K.L.B.

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One thought on “Becoming the Character

  1. Honestly, most writers draw from what they know, what they’re familiar with. I think it’s perfectly find to depict a heroine based on yourself. If you really want to veer away from that, try doing with your character what you suggested with your Martha magazines. Find an intriguing photograph of some gal, someone you don’t know. Let her picture tell you about her. What does that half-smile say? What stories are hidden in her eyes? Voila!! Instant intrigue!

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