Do you wonder how your favorite authors come up with their characters? Today, Robin Martin is giving us some insight into her character creation. You can also read an excerpt from her latest book, Once an Alien, the third book in The Alien Chronicles series, and then enter the giveaway after downloading your own copy! Be sure to leave her comments and questions and then visit the other stops on the tour for even more fun!
Once an AlienMischief, mayhem, and magic hit East Valley High when Pandora, the rogue alien, turns up. This sassy alien has one agenda, to have as much fun as she can before her people realise she's gone rogue and materialised on Earth in human form without their permission. Instantly popular, Pandora charms students and teachers alike as she parties her way through the term, but still aces her studies. Even Rion, is influenced by her as he begins to question whether he is still more alien than human. He and Zoe are finally together, but for how long? Zoe has worries too, especially about her mother's health. Everything is changing in this final year of high school. Zoe and Rion are crazy about each other, but can their new relationship last not only the ups and downs of human problems, but alien ones too!
Read an excerpt:
The music changed from an Ariana Grande pop song to the opening chords of a much older Deep Purple track my previous host, who had been around in the 60s, had listened to. I was surprised because I didn’t think many teens knew it today. Then I heard the thump of heels on wood, and I looked over to see Pandora on top of the coffee table, starting to dance and turn circles. Catching my eye, she stopped and lifted her glass. ‘This one’s for my favourite alien, Orion,—“Space Truckin’.” Woohoo!’
I sensed rather than saw heads swivel in my direction. I felt dozens of pairs of eyes on me. How could she do that? How could she blurt out the one secret I’d tried so hard to hide? I felt the blood drain from my face, and I dropped the can of cola I was holding as the opening lines of the rock song blared out. Pandora downed her drink, threw her glass into the crowd, and started to dance again.
Then I heard laughter and someone, I think it was Chad Everett, say, ‘Good one, Pandora. We always knew he was weird.’
Available on Amazon
A good plot is important, but characters bring life and breath to the story and make it come alive. I've always enjoyed creating characters, but they are not all made in the same way.
Some of them evolve with the story, and the more you write about them, the more you discover who they are. For example, Orion starts out as an alien with little understanding of human beings, even though he has known them for thousands of years. However, over the course of the series he discovers there is more to being human than he realised, and by the end he embraces his new-found humanity and his love for a human girl.
Other characters burst on the scene fully formed and ready for action. Pandora is one of these. Her personality was clear to me right from the very beginning. She's a life force ready to take anything and anyone on. Even though she's an alien, like Orion, she couldn't be more different. She wants to embrace all things human and have fun, but she knows exactly who she is, an alien. Pandora also has a lot of charm and a few alien powers, which she has no hesitation in using — much to Rion's dismay. She's also a party animal and loves a good time. Some characters, and Pandora is one of them, try to take over the book and they are just a little bossy to the writer. Occasionally, I have had to take her in hand and remind her who's in charge. Sometimes, she reluctantly agrees and does what I tell her, but not always!
Minor characters are also fun to write. Harry is my all time favourite. He's the guy who would be an ideal first boyfriend, and the boy every mother would like her daughter to date. I really had hopes for him and Zoe for a while, but Orion got in the way. I'm now casting a speculative eye at Lou. She's evolved over the series too, from the shy girl who can hardly express an opinion, to the more confident gal who decides she's never going to change herself for a guy again. I really think she and Harry would be great for each other — but they haven't let me know yet. Another character who has surprised me is Kerri. She's so studious and just that little bit socially unaware, yet sometimes she has amazing insights. I think she's been unappreciated at times, but I've a feeling that's about to change. And, finally, one of my all time favourite characters is Archimedes, a pompous and condescending alien with zero empathy for the human species. You'd really have to worry if all aliens were like him! Like Pandora, I'm pretty sure I had little to do with his creation. He just decided to gift us with his occasional visits to the books. However, sometimes he shows a weak spot, and I think Zoe's mum, Sue Brennan, might be one of those!
So characters come to me in many different ways. But what's common about them is how much fun they are to create (or perhaps semi-create in the case of Pandora and Archimedes) and, hopefully, how much they add to the life of the story.
About Robin MartinRobin Martin is an author and teacher, who writes both adult and young adult romance. Originally from Canada, she now lives in Brisbane, Australia. Her YA sci fi romance series, The Alien Chronicles includes My Alien, The Alien Within, and Once an Alien.
Her adult books published under the name Robin Thomas, include High Stakes and Bonjour Cherie.
A member of the Romance Writers of Australia and Write-Links, for children's and YA writers, Robin also connects with writers and readers on her author's Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/robinmartinthomas or on her website www.robinmartinthomas.com
Robin Martin will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway