In my next novel, Asterion, I’ll be trying to show and tell much more of the character’s personalities and background. Now though, I’ll go through some of how I came up with and developed the characters in the story (I do have quite detailed backstories about all of them, but I’ll try to keep things as brief as I can).
Jennifer Airhart – So, I was writing Baldur’s Gate fanfiction a while ago. Most of them were terrible and unfinished, but I liked writing about Imoen and Aerie just because I liked the idea of a loud obnoxious person and a quite thoughtful one being best friends and partners. Now if you don’t know who any of those are, don’t worry – Jennifer isn’t really based on Aerie (apart possibly from how she looks). If she is based on any video game character at all, it’s probably my Lone Wanderer from Fallout 3, as I would always play as a high intelligence character skilled in science and engineering and basically a bit of a daddy’s girl. But also, she’s also based a bit off himself, in that Jennifer is clearly on the spectrum somewhere, and I have Asperger’s Syndrome, so I find the socially awkward bits and the bits where she overthinks and worries too much very easily. So basically she just grew up from a number of sources.
Kaya Cade – Is the loud obnoxious one. Not really bad, bad, but in the past she’s let herself be easily led by others suppressing her own doubts. Of course one of the reasons she’s there is to ask questions so that Jen has to try and explain things to her, and any readers who don’t know what she’s on about. Of course I didn’t want her to just be that, so she’s shown several times to be the more down to earth and practical of the two. Jen would basically find it impossible to navigate the real world on her own. So after they’ve made up, Kay essentially is Jen’s translator, guiding and watching out for her, and when Jen makes a mistake or faux pas, Kay explains that she probably didn’t mean it. Like Jen she basically grow out of a number of sources, other characters and people I know and grew up.
Tenley Tych – Is pretty much a direct translation of Tenya from Baldur’s Gate, who I made a mod for. Their pasts are broadly similar, although how they develop might be a bit different. For some reason I find it easy to relate to angry kids with mixed emotions who don’t know how to express or explain it to anyone.
Sayuri Oshiro – Is essentially just based on some Japanese students who stayed with my family when I was very young and were really cool and relaxed, or so they seemed to me. I think Sayuri has only been putting up with Candace’s BS because she hadn’t an ally yet, and was hoping Kaya would eventually see sense and stand up to her. I’ve also, for some reason, always liked the idea of working in a shop (although really just a little shop with not a huge amount of a footfall, like an antique shop) so I gave her the backstory that her family runs a general store.
There are lots of others, but those are the main four who’ve had the most screen time. We’ll learn more about all of them in the next and future novels. In the meantime, the orginal novel is available from all these places: