New day job means my writing schedule is all over the place. There’s a few things I’ve been working on, but nothing that feels productive. I’ve tried to at least keep the blog ticking along and I’ve also started writing a test scene for Refugee in first person but mostly I’ve been thinking about one of the secondary characters in Gods of the Wild Frontier.
I’m a big fan of tuckerisations. This is where you drop friends and relatives into your novels. I can sometimes be a name, it can sometimes be a character. I mean, if it makes no difference whether a secondary character is called Jim or Dave, it’s more fun to name them after your mate Dave and see if they notice.
Personally, I tend to go with names rather than characters as I often find that characters change over the process of the story. Four Realms has two cats named after my best friends, a villain named after another, and all my trolls are named after author friends.
But whereas friends get name-dropped into my novels (I intend to add my Warcraft guild and a few twitter buddies to Gods) I find that my inspiration for characteristics comes from people I really dislike. I was thinking about this secondary character in Gods – he’s the father of the protagonist in a flashback – and realised that, as a confidence trickster, he’d be a stronger character if I took inspiration from someone I know.
This has happened before. In Refugee, the father figure (I can see a pattern here, but let me just say that my father is a lovely man whose biggest fault is how terrible his jokes are) is based on an old work colleague. What’s more interesting is that in both cases, the characters are slightly tragic and I use how much of an arsehole the real person is as a starting point on the character’s personal journey.
I’m not sure what this all means, if anything at all, but I don’t think it will stop me doing tuckerisations in the future.