Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Ask Andrew - Casting

Dear Andrew

When you write a story, do you make a "casting"? For example, when you first wrote Geoff Laughton, did you cast as specific actor or a person you know to play his role, or was it only a face, a silhouette in your head? I ask because when you describe the appearance, the attitude, the expressions of a new character in a story, it very often reminds me of a particular actor or actress, and from then on, I see him/her as that person. I won't tell you who "my" Geoff is, since you and every reader probably have their own image in mind, that most probably doesn’t match mine.
Dear Madeleine
When I write a character I rarely cast a famous person.  The images of the character come from my imagination.  The inspiration for Geoff actually came from a man I knew in high school.  His image popped into my head when I was first writing Geoff.  Eli on the other hand resulted from a boy I saw during an a visit to an Amish bakery when I was 19.
When I'm describing a character I try to do it with broad enough strokes so that the reader and create their own image.  For me what's important when creating a character, especially describing their appearance isn't for me to get across what I want you to see, but to give the reader enough that their imagination will kick in and they can for their own image of the character.  There have been exceptions though.  In many of the gym stories, the guys were inspired by actual people at my gym.  I don't know how they felt about that and I didn't ask.  (For the record my nose and face are still in their proper place)
More often than not, what I end up doing when I create a character is pull attributes from various people and put them together in my head.  If you as the reader pull an image of an actor to fill that character then I did my job, because your imagination kicked in and that's what I was hoping for,
Hugs and love
Ask Andrew is your chance to ask questions of a gay romance author.  The questions can be about the writing process in general, writing sex scenes, gay men, sex, characters in romance, characters having sex... okay you probably get the picture.    I promise to answer your questions as frankly and with as much humor as I possibly can.

So if you have a question, please send it to  This is different from my usual email so your questions don't get lost.  I will answer one question a week.

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