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Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Spotlight: Mahalia Levey

Background of the Book

I put a lot into the background of my books.  After I’ve jotted down the premise and the nationality of my characters, I pick out names. A good portion of the names are not typical names that are routinely seen. I feel it makes my characters stand out and that the meaning of their names matches their characteristics. After I have the basics, I look at what time period I want to write in, what country, state and town fits best for me. If it’s a world build the sky is the limit as I will make up the species, world, land, water, transportation, society structure and law on my own. If not I make sure that the mode of transport matches the true landmarks already existing.
From there I decide what social class my characters are in, the lingo, peers and job types. Most of the time they tell me what I need to know, other times I have to research. :-) I research the specific jobs they portray to make sure I represent them accurately and flesh out the stage they’ll be performing on. With Flaws and All it was easy. Nadja, the heroine, portrays lounge singer and her hero, Donato, portrays a security expert and the owner of the establishment. From there I worked on the nuances of the atmosphere adding in the secondary characters and conflict with the antagonist. Background doesn’t just stop once you have the research done. You have to know how to use it to bring out the emotion, conflict and resolution in your story.

7 comments:

Becca Dale said...

Well said, Mahalia. Accurate setting and believability are so important in fiction.

Nevea Lane said...

I'm so jealous Hales... I couldn't even begin to figure it out like that! That's ok because I love you for it, that is why I find your characters so engaging.

Hales said...

Thanks Becca :)

Nevea why the jealousy? Hehe I can help you :) Although my brain is insane mush most the time. Sort of a process and most of it I do in my head. The only reason I do the names is to be different but I am going to keep a list lol. I almost had two characters heros in diff series with the same name :)

Other than that stay tuned all week I gots lots to say :)

Serenity King said...

Great interview, Hales. Makes a lot of sense. Thanks for sharing.

Hales said...

Thanks Serenity! I had fun picking the topics of the week :)

susan said...

Thanks for the insight how you do your books. As a reader I have very little knowledge how they are done but sure do enjoy the finished products. ha ha susan Leech

Hales said...

Thanks for coming by Susan! Oh there's so much to writing. Lot's of it is done in my noggin but I do put a lot of thought or try to on how it comes out. I'm picky!