First of all, sorry for the sort of late blog post. I mentioned it briefly, but I’m actually away on vacation with family right now and totally forgot to set up a blog post to go out this week.
Anyway, I’m doing something a little different today! A few months ago, I found this writing challenge called Beautiful People, which I’ve been wanting to try ever since. Basically, every month, a set of questions goes out and writers answer them for one of their characters.
When the questions for May finally came out, I was super excited to try, and I wanted to share my results with all of you in a blog post. I chose to use my character Riley Taylor, one of the protagonists of my novella, Summertime. Perhaps another time I’ll introduce you to Leslie Summers, the other protagonist, but for now, click below to read on!
1) How often do they smile? Would they smile at a stranger?
“Smile” probably isn’t the right word for Riley – grinning or smirking is more accurate. Anyway, he does it pretty often, especially around friends. It’s not really in his personality to smile randomly at a stranger, but I wouldn’t put it past him.
2) What is the cruelest thing they’ve ever been told? And what was their reaction?
Once, someone taunted him by saying, “You gonna go cry to your momma now?” And he took it really personally. For a long time, he held a grudge against that person until they finally made up a few years later.
3) What is the kindest thing they’ve ever been told? And what was their reaction?
It’s not very specific, but Riley’s favorite guitar teacher had a lot of faith in him and always encouraged him to get better. Even after Riley stopped taking lessons, he still pursued music because of the kind words he’d been told.
4) What is one strong memory that has stuck with your character from childhood? Why is it so powerful and lasting?
When Riley was young, his mother left, not even leaving so much as a note. It’s something that he’s never been able to forget, and the memory affected him a lot growing up.
5) What book (a real actual published book!) do you think your character would benefit from reading?
Riley isn’t much of a reader. If anything, he’ll read biographies about musicians he likes. I do think he’d benefit from reading Fighter by Christopher Greenwood though.
6) Have they ever been seriously injured? How severely? How did they react?
Riley broke his arm badly once when someone dared him to do a hard skateboard trick and he failed miserably. Because there weren’t any adults around, he and his friends called an ambulance and took him to the ER. Amazingly, he and and one friend managed to keep their calm through the whole thing.
7) Do they like and get along with their neighbors?
Riley and his dad live in the upstairs apartment of a 2-apartment complex. He’s lived there his entire life, but with the downstairs neighbors changing every couple of months, he’s never really had the opportunity to get to know them well.
8) On a scale from 1 to 10 (1 being easy and 10 being difficult) how easy are they to get along with?
Probably 3 or 4. Most of the time, Riley’s pretty chill and easy to get along with. It’s only when he’s in a bad mood that he isn’t so relaxed.
9) If they could travel anywhere in the world, where would they go?
Riley would love to go to Cleveland, Ohio. It’s not very exotic, but the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is there, and that’s reason enough for him.
10) Who was the last person they held hands with?
His girlfriend, most likely.
And that’s a little bit about Riley Taylor! I enjoyed this little challenge a lot more than I thought I would, so maybe I’ll try it again in the future.
To my writer friends: have you ever done this challenge in the past? If so, feel free to share a link in the comment section! I’d love to get to know your characters a little more too.
Until next week!