While some of the books I review on my site are furnished by the publishers, authors, or publicists for the purpose of review all of my reviews are truthful, honest, and my sincere opinion.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Guest Blogger: C. Fern Cook

I am again excited to have Fern Cook guest blogging! This time she's talking about the characters in The Wild Series. So again let's see what insight Fern will share about The Wild Series!!!

Building believable characters.

In today's book market the big money is selling books to aspiring writers. You'll find a many books or seminars like 'build a fast paced exciting plot' or 'build believable characters for your novel'. I have had a few writer friends here and there and some of them have a complete library on these how-to books. I will admit to having a few myself; 'Everyday Grammar' and 'The Writer's Guide to Copyright Laws' sit on my bookshelf.

I am not a lawyer or grammartarian that is why I choose those books but I think the best characters come from real life not fill in the blanks worksheets. Making three-
dimensional characters might come a little easier for me from all the different jobs I have had and all the states I have lived in.

As a child, we moved every couple of months to keep ahead of the bill collector; I didn't know that then but I loved going to new towns and meeting new people. It was like a brand new start every time. Then I married an army man, we were stationed all over. We even lived in Germany for three years. It really widens your prospective when you live in a different culture, I would recommend it for everyone.

With every transfer my husband got, it meant a new job for me too. I have worked in restaurants, hospital, factories, jails, and construction. Who knew that meeting all these different people from different parts of the country would come together to make me a better writer someday.

The most memorable characters from 'Wild Evolution' are the law enforcement personnel. These characters are as true to life as I can get without naming names. I am going to take the Fifth on this and not name names. I used a friend's experience with coming to terms with an abusive father in Dan's character. Angela is a tribute to all those underpaid, goodhearted women I met working in restaurants. Frank is from all those small towns we lived in and the shop owners really did know everyone in town. As for Dr. Jackson, I worked in a doctor's office that had generations of patients, from one generation to the next he delivered the babies. I am sure everyone has met someone like Jack Donaldson, a mean and nasty person that everyone loves to hate.

I'll admit that I have not known anyone that ran a canned hunting facility but I have known people who had no respect for this planet or any other living creature except themselves. This is where I drew the character in Wild Justice from; Kyle Eckhart is all that and more, he is a narcissist. Cathy is the sweet, gentle person that usually gets hooked up with these horrible people. I have always found it interesting that we always want to be someone else. That's what Cathy's character is; she admires the legends and folklore of the Native Americans; this is her escape from the life she lives with Kyle.

In Wild Legacy, the Hoegh family is little from my own past. Moving around all the time did have one drawback; we never really fit in anywhere. People never really wanted to get to know us; it was more like they wanted to know about us. The lab director and his office personal come from the most dysfunctional work place I ever had the displeasure of working at. I'm sure many people can relate to working with an abusive boss. Again, the law enforcement personnel come from my years as a street cop.

I hope you enjoy the characters from the Wild series. The next book in the Wild series there will be a mix of old and new characters.

Fern, I hate when a character (specifically a main character) isn't well-developed. It seems that to really write a great character the writer needs to have had experiences with the kind of people he/she is writing about. Given the life you have led I can see where you would get the chance to meet lots of interesting people. I think knowing that these characters are at least loosely based on real people makes the even more believable to me. Thank you again for sharing with us!

You can get more information about The Wild Series and Fern Cook by visiting her website.


Anonymous said...

Ms. Cook has done such a wonderful job creating the characters in her series that I feel like I know them and that they are 'real' people living out their lives in the Colorado Rockies. I think that is one of the highest compliments that can be paid an author.

From all the author's own life experiences it sounds like she has had a lot to draw from to create her composite characters. I especially enjoyed the details of the crime scene investigagion in book #1. It was so real...and with good reason...:>

I'm so glad Ms. Cook is continuing this series and look forward to reading book #4 in the "Wild" series. The author is definitely on to something different here!

Keep up the wonderful work, Fern!

--Cecilia Huddleston

c. fern cook said...

Thanks. Sometimes the characters take on their own personality and take over the story.