To celebrate the UPRISING Blog Tour, Jessica Therrien is stopping by today to explain who she based her character off of and some of them became about. I had a blast getting to know her a little better and hope you do too!
Hey Dani’s blog buddies. I’m Jessica Therrien, author of the Children of the Gods series. I’m here to talk about building characters using real people. I’m a big believer in the concept: write what you know. Not only do I base characters off of people in my life, but I use my own memories and feelings as well.
When I started writing my Children of the Gods series it was just for fun. I never imagined anyone else would see it, so I based my main character on myself. Basing Elyse on myself was the easiest way for me to write. Throughout the process, Elyse became the best and worst parts of me.
I remember reading in Bird by Bird that the most important thing you can do is write the truth. I interpreted that as writing a character as they truly are, not how a reader wants them to be. Elyse isn’t perfect. She’s timid, a little naïve, reckless and irrational, but she’s determined and strong when it comes to those she loves.
The result has been both good and bad. Readers have very strong opinions about Elyse. Some good. Some bad. What’s important though, is that she makes people feel something. Anger over her choices, irritation at her recklessness, or compassion for her as she overcomes her struggles. In life, people are flawed. It’s unrealistic to write a character who does everything right or has no weaknesses. So, despite the fact that I sometimes get my feelings hurt when people don’t like something about her, I still stand by my decision to make her as real as possible. Using myself as the basis was the best way to do that.
A lot of my other characters are based on people in my life as well. Eventually all of my characters grow into their own, but in the beginning it’s always someone I know. Anna was based on my best friend, William was based on my husband, etc. It’s fun to use real people to create characters. It makes them more authentic, and honestly…it’s a lot easier. Besides, my husband gets a kick out of all the girls who fall for William.
Thank you for having me on your blog, Dani! It’s been fun J
It was my pleasure Jessica! Thanks for stopping by on the last day of your busy tour!
Jessica Therrien follows up her bestselling novel OPPRESSION with UPRISING, the second book in the Children of the Gods series.
OPPRESSION, translated and sold around the world, was one of the best selling YA novels of 2012. UPRISING continues the story of Elyse, William and the Descendants.
Jessica Therrien is the author of the young adult paranormal fiction series Children of the Gods. Book one in the series, Oppression, was published by ZOVA Books in February of 2012 and became a Barnes & Noble best-seller shortly after its release. The second book in the series, Uprising, will be available in May of 2013.
Aside from her Children of the Gods series, Jessica’s work can also be found in a published collection of flash fiction stories called Campaigner Challenges 2011. Out of over 350 submissions her story, The Soulless, won first place for people’s choice and fourth place in the judging round of Rachael Harrie’s Writing Campaign Challenge. Her story, Saved, is also available as part of the anthology.
Jessica currently lives in Chula Vista with her husband and is working on book three in her Children of the Gods series.
It's interesting that you base your characters on both yourself and people you know. Mine come from my imagination but I work hard to make them real to readers. Your husband must enjoy reading your books. Congrats on having a good tour Jessica.ReplyDelete
My husband thinks it's awesome, lol :) Thanks for stopping by!Delete
Thank you for having me on your blog!!ReplyDelete
This sounds like a great series!ReplyDelete