Monday, September 24, 2007

GUEST BLOGGER: LUCY MONROE



How real are your characters?

Some kids have imaginary playmates; I created whole imaginary worlds in my head and I'm still doing it. My characters become my friends and you know...I never really let them go. Not when the book is finished, not when it's finally in print...not even when I move onto something new. They're always a part of me. Just like, yes, definitely - I'm a part of them.

I've often been asked whether there is any of me in my characters. The answer is: How can it be otherwise? Amanda's (The Real Deal) initial sensual insecurity was very familiar to me when I first met my husband. Annabelle (Annabelle's Courtship) shares my interest in political issues, not to mention her propensity for getting into trouble because of her havey-cavy plans.

But the parts that are me? They're integral to a bigger whole, to a character that is more than a reflection of his or her creator, but someone who becomes very real to me. On occasions, too real...just ask my kids who no longer make the mistake of asking for anything they really want while I'm writing the black moment. When my characters are in pain or doing stupid things, I feel it. In any other profession, that might make me crazy - but as a writer, I sort of see at as essential to writing stories that are going to connect to my readers' hearts.

If I connect to my characters first, then hopefully, the link is there to be made and my readers will make it and through it, sometimes even a link to me.

I've also been asked if I model my characters after real people. The answer is a complicated one. Just like real life. :) I often recognize things in my characters that remind me of someone I know, but then that's true of living, breathing people too. How many of your friends have personality traits in common? Is it any surprise that my characters share bits of who they are and what they are like with the people that populate *my* world? However, I don't usually see these similarities until the book is in print and I'm reading it again with some distance achieved. I discovered that the lab tech Vannie in Satisfaction Guaranteed has a lot of my mother-in-law's feistiness. Simon (The Real Deal) shares a lot of traits with my husband, but I'll let you speculate which ones they are. ;-) Jillian (The Real Deal & Deal With This - Nov 07) exhibits a dichotomy of character as an actress I first saw in my baby sister.

I guess the reasons my characters are so real to me is that just like the people around me, they are layered and filled with personality quirks just like the rest of us.

Who is your favorite character from a book and if you don't mind saying...how come? Does he or she remind you of anyone you know or have met?

Hugs,
Lucy

P.S. I almost forgot...I love giving away prizes, so I'll draw a random name from the commenters on this post and that person will win a signed copy of my latest Harlequin Presents Mediterranean Brides duo.

22 comments:

AmyC said...

Hi Lucy! I'm so thrilled you're here guest blogging today! I wonder sometimes when I'm reading if the author is adding a bit of their own personality into the characters. That was a great blog!

CrystalG said...

Hi Lucy. I love your books. One character that I love is Lisa Kleypas' Derek Craven. He is a self made man whose love for his woman makes me sigh.

Crystal Adkins said...

HI Lucy!! What a great blog! I usually read Erotica/Romance so none of those men remind me of any body...but if they did I'd be makin a few phone calls! If I was not married :)
Have a great day!!

Anna said...

Hi Lucy.... I was soo excited to see that your guest blogging here. I loved reading Moon Awakening. Can't wait to read the next one in the series. :)

Tracy said...

Hi Lucy!

Great Blog. I do often wonder if authors fashion their characters from friends/relatives. I'd love to contact them all and ask but then I wouldn't get any reading done!! lol.

I don't know that I have an absolute favorite character from a book. I think that there are so many different aspects to each personality that it's hard to pin down just one. I have to say that I love Jacki's Bella a lot. She's spunky and bright and not afraid to tell it like it is!

Lucy Monroe said...

Hey, all...thanks for the warm welcome! I really think that when your characters live and breathe inside your head, there's no way they can *not* have anything in common with you or the people you know, but they're still unique in their own right. Just like people. LOL However, I do know an author who actually does fashion a character or two after real people - as a gift to them. It's really fascinating to read her stories when you know the person she was gifting. :)

Christine said...

Hi Lucy! One of my most favorite characters that I have read so far this year is Savatri... the heroine in Meljean Brook's novel, Demon Moon. I think I like her so much because she has so many personality traits that I feel are just like me.... as well as others that I wish were just like me. Does that make sense?

I am also a big fan of YA author Stephenie Meyer and about a year ago, when I read her first book, Twilight.... I think I walked around for a few days actually thinking I was Bella. Kinda didn't do much for the family, though, so I had to let that fantasy go. Bummer. :)

Lucy Monroe said...

LOL You sound like me, only it's the characters I write that I get so lost in. But you know, I think it's uber cool you get so connected to the ones you read. :)

Estella said...

Hi Lucy!
I really enjoy your books. I don't have a favorite character. Guess you could say my favorite is whoever I'm reading about at the time.

Lori said...

Hi Lucy! Great blog. I think it's something that readers wonder about frequently when they read their favorite authors, or when they read an especially interesting character.

And I agree with Tracy above - Bella is one kickass heroine. She got me out of my funk of hating heroines.

Nathalie said...

I love your books... and I don't have a favorite character... I usually all find them great! I know I am not picky!

Lily said...

My favorite character is Elise in the Woodiwiss book - So worthy my Love because she is head-strong and always knows how to respond to any situation.

Lucy Monroe said...

I understand not being able to pick a favorite...I hate it when people ask what my favorite book is I've written. It's like, um, all of them. LOL You gotta love the story you're writing to want to keep writing it, right?

But I have to say, you're all making me curious about some of these characters...I'm thinking I've got some reading to do. LOL

Jacquelyn Frank said...

A favorite character? Hmm. Is it vanity to choose one of my own? Of course it would be one of my own because that's why I wrote her! (Picking a female) I won't say her name because I love to torture people...but she is Noah's heroine. I think I identify with her need for control and the pain that comes with realizing control is a fantasy in and of itself. As for male favorite, Elijah was certainly one of the best. He's like a mighty redwood, sturdy, strong and awe-inspiringly beautiful, but Siena dives right to the roots of his soul and suddenly he's toppling over. LOVE IT!

Thanks so much for visiting us Lucy.

Lucy Monroe said...

Thanks for having me, hon! It's been lots of fun. I'll be back later tonight (after I've gotten some writing in) and do a tiny bit more chatting, then pick a winner for the free books. :)

robynl said...

I really liked Kelly in Denise Patrick's book 'Adopting Alyssa'. She reminded me so much of a friend from long ago who was wanting a baby of her own so much; whenever someone else was pregnant she would be so envious. (something like Kelly not wanting a 4 yr. old but one of her own).

cas2ajs said...

Hi Lucy! Hmmm . . . not sure about a favorite character. I guess I'd have to say Lydia in A Cowboy's Secret by Anne McAllister. I guess because she portrayed a quiet heroine but we got to see an underlying strength when she was dealing with the hero.

Cheryl

Cherie J said...

Hi Lucy!

A favorite character of mine would have to be from Nalini Singh. I just started reading her paranormal series during the summer and now I am seriously hooked. I guess I would have to pick Lucas, the leader of the leapord pack, as my favorite. He can be tough but tender with the woman he loves. My kind of Alpha male.

Maura Anderson said...

LUCY!

I'm so glad to see you and know you're okay. I worry, ya know....

I'm not sure I have a favorite character in a book, though I usually when I'm writing, my favorite in the one I'm writing about then.

' Maura

Lucy Monroe said...

Thanks to everyone for commenting. I've really enjoyed our "chat". :) The winner of the Harlequin Presents duo is:

Christine!

Hon, please email me off my website (http://lucymonroe.com) with your mailing address so I can send you your prize.

Hugs to all,
Lucy

P.S. Maura, email me! I'm definitely back in the saddle and up to some chatting again. :)

Christine said...

Oh! That's awesome!!! I'm very excited! Thank you, Lucy! =) Woot! ....emailing you now! ;)

Caffey said...

Hi Lucy!!! So good to be able to say Hi and chat with you! Oh I so know the feeling as a reader, that the characters in the books are so real with me that sometimes I'll be speaking in my mind with them saying 'no don't say that to her, say you love her' LOL. THE REAL DEAL was one of the many favorites of yours (too I loved the first historical, I must get the second one!) I feel your heroines are very strong characters. Independent as well as for asking for help. So you have a good mix in these strong characters. I wouldn't change a thing!
Cathie

 

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