Hello all! Thank you so much for joining me for another Men & Mischief post here at Sinfully. It’s no secret that I love creating characters. There’s just something incredible about giving them life, giving them hopes, aspirations, dreams, fears, regrets, memories, and everything that makes up a flawed personality, because as humans, we are all flawed in some way. For me, a big part of creating character is backstory. Some of it may appear in the book, but a good deal doesn’t. This backstory is what makes our characters who they are today.
All my main characters have backstories, though some have longer backstories than others. For example, from my THIRDS series, Dexter J. Daley’s backstory is far more detailed than a character like Lou, Dex’s ex-boyfriend. In fact, it’s probably more detailed than Calvin’s, because with Dex I also have a backstory for his parents, not just because they helped shape the kind of man Dex is, but because their story is linked to the series and plot.
Knowing where Dex came from, who raised him, how he was raised, the trials and tribulations he went through, helped me shape him into the man he is. Although Dex had a happy childhood both with his biological parents and then his adopted family, there’s still heartache there. Dex was five years old when his parents were killed, so he was old enough to remember, to feel the pain and confusion. The fact that they were killed in a shootout during date night at the movies, and the men never caught, is something he’s subconsciously never been able to move on from, despite acting otherwise.
After he was adopted by his dad’s best friend and detective partner, Dex was then given a baby brother who he’s fiercely protective over. The loss of his parents has deeply affected his protective streak, as well as his need to see justice done. Despite growing up in a law enforcement household, Dex’s drive to protect others, especially those he cares about, comes from the deep routed of pain of him not having been able to protect his parents.
In the books we get snippets from Dex’s life. We get to know bits and pieces from his childhood, from his life with his biological parents, and from his adopted family. We get little snippets about what his parents were like, how he gets his smile from his mother, his wacky sense of humor from his dad, his love of music from both. We also see how being adopted by a good man like Tony also played a huge part in the man Dex became. He did everything in his power to give Dex the best life he could. Tony—who’s also Dex’s sergeant at the THIRDS—raised Dex. He was there for the good and bad, through the awkward sex education course—there’s a pizza guy involved—through those tricky teenage years, the many, many times at the Principal’s office, through college, the break-ups, and everything that’s come after.
The people in Dex’s life also helped shape him into the man he is. Then there’s the part where Dex’s character must continue to grow. On my blog I have a THIRDS Thursdays, which is THIRDS flash fiction written to prompts submitted by readers. Thanks to THIRDS Thursdays, I’ve been able to share some of the characters’ backstories that doesn’t get to make it into the books. We get to see the characters during their childhood. Interactions with friends and family who are no longer around. We get to see scenes where love first bloomed, where characters first met, Dex with his parents, all scenes that would never make it into the series, and I absolutely love sharing them.
What do you think makes a good character? How much do you want to know about your favorite characters, inside their book and outside?
Meet Charlie Cochet
Charlie Cochet is an author by day and artist by night. Always quick to succumb to the whispers of her wayward muse, no star is out of reach when following her passion. From Historical to Fantasy, Contemporary to Science Fiction, there’s bound to be plenty of mischief for her heroes to find themselves in, and plenty of romance, too!
Currently residing in South Florida, Charlie looks forward to migrating to a land where the weather includes seasons other than hot, hotter, and boy, it’s hot! When she isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading, drawing, or watching movies. She runs on coffee, thrives on music, and loves to hear from readers.
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::: Silke Kohlmorgen :::