I recommend reading I Don’t Want to Just Write about Characters like Me before reading this post.
Excuse me while I once again talk about The Society. If you hadn’t noticed, it consumes quite a bit of my time. This post was prompted by Devon’s interview and this post where I mentioned that I gave Devon hobbies that are like mine. Anyone who knows me would have seen that in his interview. This post came out of a continuation of my thoughts after writing both posts that I linked.
I consider Devon to be that character in The Society who is most like me. Ledia has a few of my worst traits, which I’ve mentioned before, but I ended up giving Devon traits that I both like and dislike about myself. He’s not completely the same as me, but I think the similarities would be noticeable to anyone who knows me and read about him.
I didn’t mean for that to happen when I started writing the story. From the beginning I planned to make Devon a nerd, but I didn’t plan for it to become a large part of the story. It was going to be something in the background and not even mentioned all that much. That’s how it still is, but Devon’s fleshed himself out more in my mind and managed to morph into something I hadn’t planned in my mind. He became the character in the story that I relate most to.
It’s almost funny to me now because as the story progresses, Devon becomes less at the center of events. He’s still important, but he’s not usually in the thick of the action. I see it as exactly what I would be up to if I were in a magical world, i.e. not always the doing most exciting stuff like the lead.
I feel fond of all my characters, but my feelings about Devon are a bit different. I’m fond of him, but as is perhaps a bit unsurprising after this post, he’s not always the one I get most excited to write about. Sometimes I write a scene where Devon’s there, and when I go back over it I realize that I’ve had him do nothing other than stand around. I do wonder how much of that is wrapped up in me viewing him as a fictional representation of myself. That’s what I feel like I’m going in groups of people. It’s either that or just the want to write about and explore the characters more different from me.
It’s a strange sort of dichotomy. I love Devon as a character, and I do enjoy writing him the majority of the time. I think he’s important to the story, and he adds something that would be missing otherwise. Still, sometimes he’s hard to write, even though any similarities we share don’t make me feel like I’m baring my soul through him. I still haven’t pinpointed the exact reason actually. In a strange way that kind of makes him the most interesting character to me.