I know parents are not supposed to have a favorite child, but does that apply to writers as well? Are we writers allowed to have a favorite character? To be honest, my favorite character is usually the one I’ve just finished writing. But this time I do feel as if Melanie – from Picture Not Perfect – will remain a favorite for years to come. I just love her! It’s so much fun to write a character who’s crazy. You can put them in all kinds of odd situations and just let them go. (And maybe fantasize a bit that you could have just as much fun!)
My question – is it okay for writers to have a favorite character – is not entirely frivolous. Because I do think there is a bit of a danger to having a favorite. Dangerous? How in the world can it be dangerous to have a favorite character? Let me explain.
I had a ball writing my Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives series. It was my first attempt at chick lit (which turned into mystery but that’s a different story). I had so much fun I didn’t realize I was using the same humor for each of the main characters. Oops! This is indeed the danger of having a favorite character. I tend to write her over and over again. I’m pretty sure my readers are not waiting to read yet another Izzy (the main character in Murder, Mystery & Dating Mayhem). In fact, readers were quite clear about that. Eek!
This was a valuable lesson for me. It’s okay to have a favorite character, but I need to make sure I don’t simply put her in a different coat to revive her for a new novel. I’ll try, but no promises. Although I’m certainly loving Pru, the protagonist in book 3 of the Not So Reluctant Detectives Series, which I’m writing now. She’s completely different than her friend Mel. Huh. Maybe I do just fall in love with whatever character I’m writing.