Do your characters speak to you?
Well, I wouldn’t say I hear voices in the back of my head, but I do usually have a batch of characters on my mind. When I initially think of a character, it takes another week (at the very least, and depending on what I’m working on) for me to develop them and understand them enough to write down their story.
What is the funniest thing you have heard from one of your characters?
I’m always surprised by my characters. What they say, what they do, and how they change. Oftentimes I say that my characters are wittier than I am, and it’s the truth. To some degree, it’s not me making this stuff up, it’s them. Call it subconscious, call it weird, call it crazy, but when I write, I am handing the reins over to the characters—I’m just along for the ride.
What is the most memorable thing one has said?
In my new novel, my character Elise is bold and direct in her dialogue, and I like that. However, the most memorable moments with Elise are the places where she softens and becomes a little more vulnerable. There’s a scene where she does this with another character, Ryan, about halfway through the book. I love seeing my characters change and grow, and Elise’s development was evident in this scene.
Who is your favorite character?
I don’t like to pick favorites, but if I had to, I’d pick Orson from my upcoming novel (stay tuned!). He was given reign over some conquered territory from his father as a way to keep Orson busy in the shadow of his powerful older brother. After going through abuse and witnessing the suicide of his wife, Orson falls into a depression that slowly eats away at his sanity and eventually his mind seeks refuge in an alternate personality called Odell.
Exploring the mind of such a complicated character was fascinating. Yet thinking of him in a different light, not so much from the writer’s perspective but from my perspective as a person, I have a certain sympathy and curiosity for him.
Who is your least favorite character?
I don’t think I could ever venture to dislike a character and this is why: When I write about a character, I know their motivation—the reason they think what they think and do what they do. This means that I feel sympathy and understanding even in a character who makes bad decisions.
Characteristics that you admire in a character?
Their uniqueness. They are all individuals and they all struggle and make mistakes and do the best they can in light of the challenges they are presented with. Simply put, I admire them for them.
Pet peeves about a character?
I’d like to say that my characters bother me sometimes, but I can’t! In fact, when they say things that surprise me or do things that are unplanned (even if it causes the story to be more complicated) the writing experience is just that more spontaneous and fun. I don’t want my entire book to be planned before I write it, I’d rather explore and uncover things as I go.
Nicole J. Persun started her professional writing career at the age of sixteen with her young adult novel, A Kingdom’s Possession, which was a finalist for ForeWord Magazine’s Book of the Year Award. Aside from novels, Nicole has had short stories, flash fiction, poetry, and essays published in a handful of literary journals. Her inspiration is drawn from the latest studies and findings in biology, astronomy, archaeology, psychology, and any other form of scientific, historical, or artistic discovery. She often speaks at libraries, writer’s groups, and writer’s conferences across the country. Currently getting a degree in creative writing, Nicole lives in Washington State. For more information, visit Nicole’s website at: www.nicolejpersun.com.
The Author in all of us
There is a story inside. One that needs out and to be read by others. It's there and now it's time for it to flow from author to the reader. Join us as we celebrate Indie authors.