Tag Archives: characters

May Book Blogger Hop

Hey, I’m a bit late for last week’s Book Blogger Hop but here’s my answer to:

What book character do you think you are most like and why?

Like Harriet (Hetty) Deveraux, from Sarah Maine’s House Between Tides, I have ancestry from a small island. In my case my great grandmother was Harriet Renier who was born on the island of Alderney.

Hetty is drawn to her ancestral home, as I have always been to Alderney. I now live in Fife where there are so many similarities between here and The Channel Islands, especially to Alderney. The pace of life, sense of community, the seascapes and landscape too. (although not so many forts, castles abound!)

Hetty is inspired and interested in history, as I am. If there is a mystery she wants to discover the truth. I love to research and ‘dig’ into the past, and so Libby from Sarah Maine’s Women of the Dunes also resonates with me.

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What character in a novel you’ve read recently are you most like?

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Filed under Alderney, Blogs, Book reading, Fife

Challenge ~ Throw a Dice for Memories of a character in a book



When Dot in ‘MISSING Past and Present’ threw a dice, she remembered scenes in her life as if they were pages in her own book. Her back story.

AUTHORS ~ Think of a character in your book, or one of your novels that you are proud of.

READERS ~ Think of a character in a novel you really enjoyed recently.

If a throw of a SIX represents the best day or ‘happening’ in your chosen character’s life and a ONE the worst, can you write down memories from ONE TO SIX.

The challenge is to choose moments in their lives which intrigue a reader into wanting to know more, without giving the whole plot away.

I’m going to begin. Just to give you an idea I am going to chose Jamal. ~an important character in my novel but not the protagonist.

A short character description ~ Jamal is a Syrian refugee who has been living in the UK for over two years. He is intelligent, thoughtful and is a hard worker.

ONE ~  Jamal remembers the moment he lost both his parents in the war back home.

TWO ~ His feelings when arriving in England were bewildering. The only person he had to cling to, who gave him any thoughts of normality was his older brother Ahmed.

THREE ~ Working at his friend Brian’s Dad’s business.

FOUR ~ Learning to speak English at Mrs G’s (Dot’s) kitchen table

FIVE ~ Jamal found Dot.

SIX ~ Jamal fell in love.

If you are an AUTHOR and have a blog then post:

  • your character’s six memories
  • a short description of the character
  • the name of your novel
  • a book cover.

If you are a READER then send them to me and I’ll post them on my blog.

You can do this through my contact page,

email diana@dianamaryjackson.co.uk or tell me @Riduna on Twitter

or on my Facebook Page

I will re-post the ones I like best….

It would be great to have a Blog Hop of DICE MEMORIES!

Let me know if you’d like to join and I’ll arrange it.


Filed under Book reading, Marketing your novel, MISSING Past and Present, Mystery inspired by history series, Social Media Networking, Writing a novel

Characters in the Box ~ Guest Author Karen Dahood talks about her inspiring mystery characters

KarenDahoodCharacters in the Box 

What decides the physical appearance of a mystery series character? Does it change?

Miss Marple, she is not. My American eldersleuth, Sophie George, is meant to be much more up to date than Agatha Christie’s revered observer of village life who is so good at upending unpleasant domestic affairs (including murders). Jane’s people have marital difficulties, mainly, or anxiety about inheritance, typical midlife worries of the 1930’s-1960’s. Sophie’s clients in the 2000’s suffer from the agonies of aging: financial woes, estrangements from children, loneliness, heartbreak, bad health, a lifelong desire for revenge. Like Jane Marple, my retired librarian has an ally in a local detective – who is also her steady date. But Sophie is not a spinster. She is a widow and has a son. She is financially independent while Jane, who never was employed, receives support from her nephew. Sophie, raised during the Great Depression, was not educated like Jane, who went to school in Rome, yet she is equally brainy, some would say “street smart.” Her Bridgewater Village is hardly St. Mary Mead; it’s a new Florida condo development around a synthetic (but not entirely safe) fishing pond.

In the most recent TV interpretation, Jane Marple has shed her rather ponderous first movie appearance (Margaret Rutherford) to become quite svelte (Geraldine McEwen). Likewise, my Sophie is slender, keeps up an exercise regimen, and cares about nutrition. That is much more in keeping with today’s expectations.

Still, when I captured this bulky woman in black heading into the walled garden at The Bishop’s Palace, London, I Fulham Palace May 4 2014 (22)wished I had seen her before I invented Sophie George. With her back to the camera, the commanding figure is going someplace. I followed her, so I know it was to see the first purple irises. She was probably a garden volunteer. Her long fingers look useful. Or maybe she is a benefactress, as she has elegant earrings, though they may be old ones her deceased husband gave her in 1950. (I extrapolate from the man accompanying her that she has a driver.) The coat and hat and clunky shoes seem to have been in her closet for a very long time. (My Sophie seldom wastes money on clothes.)

In WINDOW ON THE POND Sophie is recognized as a New England native by her housewifely cotton skirt. I don’t show her face. It’s not important. I want you to imagine it.

026Last year I looked for characters with my camera as I rode around on London buses. I like the messy hairdo under a felt hat on this younger woman in the seat in front of me. Now I am thinking if I imagined it dark it could be Sophie on a future investigative commute. And I am hoping to create a character who looks something like this barrister (probably) who was studying his briefs on a train.

Karen Dahood lives in Tucson, Arizona. Her posts can be found on www.moxiecosmos.com and her book reviews at www.bookpleasures.com (Norm Goldman).


Filed under Guest author, Planning a novel, Writing