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Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Creating Secondary Characters

Secondary characters are useful. Your heroine doesn't need to look into a mirror to describe her features. She's got a sidekick more than willing to point out her foibles. As Pinocchio relied upon Jiminy Cricket to become real, most heroines and/or heroes could use a confidante to guide them along on their journey--or sometimes point out the obvious when their rose-colored glasses obstruct the view.

Secondary characters are also great fun to bring to life. For instance, in my historical, PATRIOT'S PRIDE, Mrs. Ulery is the heroine's companion and chaperone on a long journey to England. The heroine barely knows the older woman, but it soon becomes obvious that Mrs. Ulery has an inordinate fondness for whiskey. While the heroine is horrified at this discovery, the heroine finds Mrs. Ulery's other hidden talents more than helpful.

Readers have enjoyed Mrs. Ulery. In addition to being a foil for the very proper heroine, she provides humor and a slight touch of wisdom, despite her love of liquor. In fact, it is that failing of hers which rounds out the older woman and makes her seem genuine.

Here's a great post about supporting characters and how to create them:

So have some fun with your secondary characters. Your heroes and heroines need some support!

Photo Credit: "A Woman Reading, The Chamber-Maid Brings Tea" via photopin (license)


Jenn Nixon said...

<3 great blog!

Penelope Marzec said...


Thanks for stopping by!