Thursday, June 25, 2009

Imaginary People

I want to thank Maia for putting such a great finishing touch on the round robin. (Maia, you are never allowed to switch your blog day, okay?) It was fun to share a story with so many terrific m/m authors.

One thing that works for me when creating and working with characters is a personality profile that allows for a lot of variation. The character in my current work in progress is a personality type that I've never written before--not in anything I've ever written het or m/m, published or entertaining the dust bunnies under the bed. Of course, I've paired this guy with a character of a personality type I swore never to write again, but that's the way they made themselves. (Rat bastards.)

So what I've been wondering is this: Do you prefer reading or writing characters who are like you in personality or as unlike you as possible? As a reader of romance, I tend to identify more with one character and fall in love with the other (regardless of gender). When I'm writing I'm on the side of whoever's point of view I'm in at the time. When I watch a relationship-based movie or television show, I identify with whichever character is currently getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop. (And no, I didn't mean that sexually. *g*)

My favorite pairings to read and watch and write are of a control freak who is shut down and an equally stubborn you-will-notice-me character (*coughs* Aaron and Joey). But as much as I love that pairing, those personality types are absolutely nothing like me personally. Is that why I like them so much? Or is it because they're so perfectly matched in conflict that they make for a good story?

Anyway, I made a poll on my live journal. You can weigh in over there (even if you don’t have a live journal) or right here in the comments.

Enjoy your Pride weekend. I’m going to Toronto.


Maia Strong said...

(Maia, you are never allowed to switch your blog day, okay?)
That's cool with me. :)

I'm thinking about your question and I can't decide. I think I prefer something in the middle: characters I can relate to but who can still surprise me. My acid test of main characters is "Would I go drinking with him/her?" If the answer isn't yes, I don't keep reading.

Have fun in Toronto!

K.A. Mitchell said...

I love your acid test. I have character I'd like to see move next door, and some I wouldn't want to take a long bus trip with. I'm going to apply yours.

Maia Strong said...

Oh man, I can think of a lot of characters I wouldn't want to take a long bus trip with. ::shudder::

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