Thursday, November 16, 2006

I've never looked at a male movie star, sports personality, or world leader, and thought, "My hero!"

Although I may have thought, "With his looks, what a villain he would make!" I don't want to go there. Most of my characters are a blend of at least three --or more-- sources, and all are products of my imagination.

Heroines are another story. I need a model. Not a runway model, but someone I can rewind and freeze frame. Djinni-vera in FORCED MATE was based on two women, but since it took me ten years to polish that book, I had plenty of leisure to stare (covertly) at real people, great cheek bones, and the way beautiful women smile when they are nervous.

Helispeta of MATING NET was a heroine written in a hurry. I hadn't expected to be given less than six months to write the story of a royal grandmother's first sexual miscalculation. Helispeta's beautiful, tragic, deer-in-the-headlights face was borrowed from the cover of a magazine.

Then, I changed her hair and eye color, the size and shape of her lower lip.... and all her vital statistics.

I had to watch TV for months before I spotted someone with the potential to model for Martia-Djulia of INSUFFICIENT MATING MATERIAL. I'm not talking looks as much as animation, idiosyncracies, hand movements... maybe the faces she pulls when she is kissing the hero.

Now, I'm writing Electra-Djerroldina's story. By the way, with the Dj spelling which I use as an easy heads-up to the reader that this character is a royal Djinn, the D is silent. Maybe I'm getting better. Maybe I was lucky this time. It only took me three months to find the perfect role model with a slow motion sneer to kick-start my latest heroine's character.

Best wishes,
Rowena Cherry

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