Introducing the Characters of Beyond Her Calling
Hello ladies and gents!
Now that we’ve actually begun NaNoWriMo,* I decided it was time to actually introduce you to my NaNo novel & my NaNo-prep process. Even though we’ve already begun so technically that’s all over. Just … ignore me tardiness. Pretend it’s two weeks ago.
*(I WAS SICK OKAY!?!?)
I thought I’d just dash up a post and give a brief introduction to both, but you already know the basic plot (or you can just by reading the blurb on NaNoWriMo or my WIP page) and my basic outlining process, so either I’m going to have to do something slightly more complicated, or I’m going to have to be #lame.
Weeeeell, I’m lame in enough areas of my life. Allow me to introduce you to the characters of Beyond Her Calling and how they came to be.
Above is my basic outlining equipment. The red notebook is sacred. Nothing except information about Beyond Her Calling can go into it.
I don’t let water drip on it.
I don’t scribble in the margins.
I don’t let the pages get ripped or wrinkled.
I guard it with my very life.
This may not be your thing, but I like making things special. If something’s special, I like it better. Partially because it’s different and original
The first thing I do when I begin working on my characters – or outlining, for that matter – is making a list of every character that will appear in the book. It’s almost an entire page, and some of it is just “The Jamesons.” Imagine if I were to list out every Jameson? Granted, there’s only five of them, but still.
I have too many characters.
It doesn’t really confuse me, though. The more, the merrier, I say. If I’m not confused, my readers shouldn’t be either. Right? I said, right?
Second, I list the characters again, this time adding three things about their personality. For Ivy’s stepbrother Ned, it was “serious, sedate, and strong” (I don’t know why I did all S’s; it was unintentional). It helps me remember their basic personality and writing it out again makes me remember their names, too (which is … something a person with so many characters is inclined to struggle with).
(Note that none of this is set in stone. I know of at least two characters whose personalities I had to change, and several characters were re-dubbed as I found better names for them.)
I also color-coded my list. As you can see in the above picture, I used red for Jordy/related to Jordy, blue for the inhabits of Keefmore. I used green for Ivy, but I was forced to crop that out of the picture because otherwise you’d have gotten some #spoilers for At Her Fingertips.
This is a closer view of the notebook. And yes, yes I did take out a lot of it. That’s for your own protection. No AFOP spoilers, y’all. 😉
I know a lot about my characters already, so knowing who they all are is the most important thing – and having the basics of their personality.
Except for the characters who actually have an arc.
The characters I’m concentrating on for this particular book are Ivy Knight and Jordy McAllen.
I think most of you probably know who Ivy is (the heroine of Ivy Introspective, for one), but because some of you won’t, I’ll introduce her.
Ivy is a quiet, dependent young woman with a slight mental disability that leads people to call her ‘simple.’ With her family constantly smothering and overprotecting her, she’s never really had to do much for herself, despite the peace of mind she gained from learning to live with herself (during Ivy Introspective) However, little does she know, she is perfectly capable of managing her own life.
She is an INFP. *is too lazy to explain her personality* *especially since you know her so well*
Jordy was Dr. McCale’s protege and assistant in Ivy Introspective. He’s very much an Entertainer (ESFP)
(which, by the way, is Bailey’s personality type … something I only realized AFTER I’d decided he was ESFP, bad friend that I am).
In Beyond Her Calling, he’s twenty-four years old, has gone through three years of college and four years working at a hospital in London, and is seeking a position as a country doctor.
I think Jordy is going to be a lot of fun to write. This is, overall, going to be a fun story (with some sadness … there’s one particular thing I’m excited to make people cry with, haha), and he is one of the best parts.
Jordy & Ivy, Kirk & Ivy*, Jordy & Violet?
*WHAT EVEN!? YOU ALL ARE CRAZY. I mean, Kirk and Ivy really do get along well, but … it’s just a friendship! #mythbusted
In various conversation with internet friends, a lot of ships were suggested for this book. (And for At Her Fingertips, for that matter.)
Those were only three of them – random names I hadn’t even thought of were thrown around, too – but those are the ones that was actually feasible.
What do you think? I made a mood graphic for Ivy/Jordy (something I never did for Kirk/Alice, by the way, because … well, I won’t explain why), and I think it’s pretty.
However, you know those two. And I’d like to introduce you to some of the other characters. Because I don’t want to make you sit through pages and pages, I’ve decided to focus on the people of Keefmore.
Also, I have pictures of many of them on my Pinterest board. Which is fun.
Mr. Albert and Mrs. Annis McAllen
Jordy’s parents. They’re sheep/cow farmers (I don’t say “cattle” because that sounds wrong for Scotland … I know, I’m weird). Anyway, I think I need to figure out these two’s personalities as I write. Because I need to leave myself a couple things to figure out and stress over.
Edi (22), Benji (18), Mick (17), Alby (13), and Tas (8)
Jordy’s siblings. Edi is awesome; she’s pretty much in charge of all her brothers, including Jordy. Benji is the tall, dark, silent type (only all the McAllens are carrot-tops, soooo?). Mick is the impulsive one. Alby is dreamy and poetic. Tas is probably a little spoiled and babyish (’cause youngests … y’know).
Jordy’s best friend; Edi’s fiance. Is the polar opposite of Jordy; quiet, stoic, steady, keeps to himself, never takes risks. Took forever to propose to Edi, despite her somewhat obviously waiting for him for years.
A young widow of a couple months. She’s going to have a baby. And she lost two small children to the same fever that took her husband. *weeps* This is actually a recent plot development … I think I figured it out Sunday night. Before, her husband was actually going to be alive …
Ena’s six-year-old daughter. She’s really cute. Breaks her wrist or something like that. *needs to figure out the details* *probably has by now, but scheduled the post Monday night* *shrugs*
*I don’t know how realistic this is for 1880s Scotland, but … but … *can’t resist*
A banker/accountant/lawyer who travels a lot. His wife died (but is perfectly fine with being alone because he’s #tough and #totallyunfeeling). Probably spends most of his time in Edinburgh.
Calvin’s daughter; Delia’s best friend. A little proper miss and towngirl who no one quite understands. Considers herself the mistress of her household, which she usually lives alone in except for her ancient great-grandmother and great-aunt (whose names are Granny Mairi and Auntie Thomasina #justmadethatup).
Agnes and Blaire Dunmore
The local midwife and her sixteen-year-old daughter who are outcasts and yet kind of necessary, so everyone deals with them. Really dislike Jordy. #competition
And … there are a few others, but those are the main players (as of Monday, October 30th … things keep changing up in this house!).
As you know, the first day of NaNoWriMo is today. I’ll give you an update Saturday, but since I’m scheduling ahead of time, I won’t be able to give you my Day 1 wordcount right now.
However, I’m sure it’s amazing. 😉
Thanks for reading and may your November be profitable however you choose to spend it!
What do you think of the characters of Beyond Her Calling? How’s your first day of NaNo going? If you’re participating or if you’re not! What would be a good ship name for Jordy/Ivy? Or your preferred ship, though you’re setting yourself up for disappointment, mate.