Well, hello there beautiful people! (Geddit.) My July Beautiful People post was pretty late so, lucky you, here’s another one in very short succession.
If you’ve never heard of Beautiful People, it’s a linkup for writers where we delve into our characters’ minds and answer ten questions set by the lovely and magnanimous Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further up and further in. Hop over to these fabulous ladies’ blogs if you want to join in!
As my finished MS is currently waiting in the wings for a Pitch Wars mentor to fall in love with it and choose me as their 2017 mentee, I’ll be using my new WIP, Cockle Shells and Silver Bells for BP.
My MC’s name is Em, she’s an orphan who grew up on her great uncle’s farm in North Yorkshire before inheriting a seafront mansion on turning 18. Cockle Shells and Silver Bells is a YA magical realism reimagining of The Secret Garden.
What are they addicted to/can’t live without?
Books! As an orphan who was home schooled because the nearest school was miles away, Em lives to read and uses them as an escape from her sheltered, quiet life in the remote Yorkshire moors. It’s all very Bronte.
Name 3 positive and 3 negative qualities about your character.
I’m not sure I can really separate them into columns of positive and negative, but I’ll give you a few of Em’s personal traits.
- She’s shy and hates big crowds, she much prefers solitude after years roaming the moors alone.
- She’s very closed off from others after losing her parents in a car accident ten years ago, she doesn’t open her heart easily, only her great uncle Archie has found his way in and even that took years!
- She loves animals and wanted to be a vet when she was younger, she’d still love to work with animals, but in a career that doesn’t involve having to put them down.
- She has buckets of creativity and always has a project on the go, whether it’s her gender bent Pride & Prejudice fanfic on Tumblr, redecorating the family estate, or tending to the garden.
- She’s lead quite a sheltered life so far, but she’s open to new experiences and just needs someone to show her the way.
- She loves learning and was a very keen student when she was being home-schooled. She did exceptionally well in her exams and would still like to go to university one day, but she decided to take some time out to experience life and accept her inheritance first.
Are they holding onto something they should get rid of?
Only fear and grief, nothing physical. She lets the pain of losing her parents as a child stop her from making new friends or really letting anyone in. Hopefully by the end of the book she will have learnt from that!
If 10 is completely organized and 1 is completely messy, where do they fall on the scale?
Like 9 maybe, she’s not perfect and can still be a normal, messy teen at times, but she’d definitely more sensible and organised than your average 18 year old.
What most frustrates them about the world they live in?
That bad things happen for no reason at all, and often to good people, while great things happen to terrible people too.
How would they dress for a night out? How would they dress for a night in?
She’s a big lover of comfy pyjamas and onesies for nights in, preferably with animals all over them and fuzzy slippers. She’s never been on a night out, but she does have some pretty cute tea dresses from the vintage shops in York and Harrogate.
How many shoes do they own, and what kind?
Not many, and most are wellies or walking boots. She’s got a couple of pairs of Mary-Janes for special occasions, but she’s not a big fan of heels.
Do they have any pets? What pet do they WISH they had?
She has the farm animals, and when she moved to the Haigh Manor she discovers a white cat who visits regularly and prowls around the gardens. Em names her Clemence and put water out for her.
Is there something or someone that they resent? Why and what happened?
She doesn’t really know who to direct her anger at from her parents’ deaths, but she wanted to stay in France where they lived, she didn’t want to be taken away from their home and her friends. She was mad at Archie at first when he picked her up and brought her back to Yorkshire with him, but really she knew it wasn’t his fault. She’s just mad at the world for what happened, she can’t understand the random chaos that is life and prefers to protect herself from ever getting hurt again.
What’s usually in their fridge or pantry?
At the farm the kitchen was well stocked with their own produce – dairy products, eggs, freshly baked bread and various meats. At the manor, the pantry is similarly filled (shipped over from Archie’s farm before she arrives), with added jams and preserves, handmade by the housekeeper Maggie. Em isn’t a huge eater, but she is partial to a spot of tea with bread and jam.
And that’s all folks! Did you enjoy learning more about Em and my new WIP? She’s a salty one, I’m really looking forward to spending more time with her while I write this novel, it’s been on hold for a few weeks while I prepped for Pitch Wars, but I think I’m ready to dive back in.
Watch this space!