Margaret explains how she brings her characters alive.
One of the hardest things for
a writer is making our characters come alive for the reader. I’ve heard people
talk about cardboard characters and I know what they mean. The secret is
getting right inside your character’s head. Knowing that person as well as you
I invariably do a character
study. For instance in the book I’m currently working on, as well as knowing
what my heroine looks like, I know her age, her birth sign, her temperament. I
know what boyfriends she’s had in the past, why they haven’t matched up to her
ideal. Some of her ex’s would say she’s cold and unemotional, that she will
probably remain a spinster all her life because no man wants a woman who
doesn’t have feelings.
The truth is her parents are
divorced, as is her older sister, so she thinks it’s fatal to take men at face
value. She does want to get married, though mainly for security reasons. She
thinks true love is idealistic but not probable. She would like to meet Mr
Right but really doesn’t think it possible.
My hero on the other hand has
declared he will never get married. He loves women, what man doesn’t? But a man
in his possession (rich and successful) has to be careful. He can attract women
without even trying and finds this disappointing. Most of them want something,
and it’s usually marriage. Or simply someone to take them to places they could
never afford. He’s become a good judge of character, usually able to tell what
a woman wants within the first few minutes of meeting them.
Although he’s an only child he
wasn’t spoilt by his parents, they made him work for whatever he wanted which
has made him into the man he is today. He’s very proud of what he’s achieved
and the only thing missing in his life is a woman. He’s begun to think there isn’t
one out there who will accept him for what he is and not who he is.
So, I had all this
information before I began to write my story. It made everything so much
easier. It actually feels like I’m writing about people I know instead of those
cardboard characters I was talking about.