Saturday, 4 August 2012

6 of the best... working with the same characters in a series


Six pointers for writers who are thinking of using the same group of characters in a book series.

Prolific author, David Robinson, shares his expertise.

The Upside

·        You don’t spend hours thinking up your key characters’ names, ages, appearance, etc.

·        You have the opportunity to fully develop the characters over several books.

·        You can hit them with life-changing matters (e.g. divorce, serious illness, death of a loved one) and test their resolve.

The Downside

·        You have to be sure that every action is in character. 

·        You need to check that all your vital data is consistent from book to book. Other than in a prequel, you could not, for example, have your heroine aged 45 in Book 1, and 27 in Book 2.

·        You are faced with a constant struggle to find new situations, problems and solutions for your characters.

David Robinson has produced several series, but the most popular are the light-hearted whodunits of the Sanford 3rd Age Club Mysteries, published by Crooked Cat Books. Visit the Sanford 3rd Age Club Mysteries website HERE



Cathie Dunn said...

Oooohh... "have your heroine aged 45 in Book 1, and 27 in Book 2."

David, happens all the time - it's called plastic surgery. ;-)

Great post. I must remember each character's quirks when I start writing part 2 of The Anarchy Series. My word...

I hear there are more SATC mysteries in the pipeline?

Writer Pat Newcombe said...

I've often thought about re-using my favourite charcters and people have asked me if the same ones will be in the next book BUT I have enough trouble keeping track in one book and am a little prone to the blue eyes/brown eyes syndrome... If I'm not careful!