Monday, May 9, 2011

Men Who Resemble My Characters

I've got it bad right now. The hero of my current WIP ("Memories") is Jack VanAllen. I describe him vaguely in the book (I like to have my readers put their own spin on the likeness, you know?), but I know what he looks like.

Then on one Wake Me Up Wednesday blog from Renee Vincent, she posted pictures of Alex O'Loughlin. Oh my! There was Jack!

I kind of knew who the actor was. I knew he was on Hawaii Five-O (a series my husband was watching but I didn't have much interest in) and discovered he was on a short-lived vampire series I tried to watch (the vampire premise was interesting, but I didn't care for the show).

Now I'm in the middle of editing/revising and I can't get enough of Hawaii Five-O! All because of Alex, mind you. It's like seeing my character on screen. Unreal!

A minor character from my second book ("Sarah's Turn"), Sam Kincaid was definitely written with an actor in mind – Brandon Routh. Yeah, he made a nice Superman and all that, but caught my attention on an episode of "Chuck". Oh yeah – he was Sam! I had hoped to get Brandon's autograph while at Dragon*Con last year, but the cost was prohibitive (to my pocket book, anyway). One day Sam will be featured in his own book. I'm sure I'll have a fixation on Brandon when that occurs!

Normally, I don't flash on celebrities when I read a book. I form a picture of them in my head, but no one famous. So it was strange when it happened as I wrote a book. I had a sense of what Sam looked like, but nothing firm. Then I saw Brandon and BAM! There was my description. But Jack was different. I had already formed a likeness in my head and no one triggered it. At least I didn't think so. Maybe it was buried in my sub conscience. Who knows!

Do you picture famous people of characters you read (or create)? Is it normal for you, or does it only happen occasionally?


Todd R. Moody said...

I do that all the time Stacy! I thought I had Laurent figured out, but I keep loosing track of who I had in mind. I am actually thinking of trying to turn mine into a screenplay when I finish the book, but it would have to really be whittled down. Great post! BTW we actually loved that vampire show.

Stacy McKitrick said...

You'll have to let me know who you pegged for Laurent! Then I'll let you know if you succeeded in describing him correctly.

As for the vampire show Alex was on, I liked his character, but didn't like his friends. That was enough to turn me off. And now I'm picturing an actor who played a vampire to be the vampire in my book. Pretty sweet, huh?

Anne R. Allen said...

I've heard other writers say they pictured actors playing the roles of their characters, but usually my characters come into my head fully formed--not looking like anybody I've seen before. But every so often, I'll see somebody in a crowd and go--OMG, there's my heroine (or hero) Sometimes they're wearing the exact sort of outfit I've recently described my character wearing. That gets spooky.

Linda Leszczuk said...

I use real people but only for certain features. I'll take this one's hair, that one's eyes, etc. So my characters are more of a composite. It gives me great visuals for doing descriptions without having my character look too much like any one person.

Stacy McKitrick said...

But Linda, that's what I thought I did with Jack. But when I saw Alex's pictures, I realized that's who I pictured as Jack. I had no idea who the guy was at the time - except for the ads for Hawaii Five-0. He doesn't look anything like he did on that vampire show.

Now I'm torn as to whether or not to post another blog. I'm enjoying seeing his face up there! I'm sad, I know!

Bethany Myers said...

This is hilarious. Yes, I've also already cast my book with actors. And even sometimes the hot barrista at Starbucks.

Great post!

Stacy McKitrick said...

Hi Bethany! Thanks for following. And for noticing this post. See, I knew I could find a way to always have Alex's face on my blog. This post has gotten so many hits, it became a no-brainer! Thanks for visiting! And following!