Where do characters come from?

Patricia Davids here.
This month's blog is about characters. Where do mine come from?
My characters come down the road in a horse drawn buggy. Seriously, they do.
They come from Ohio and Pennsylvania by the way of a little Kansas town called Hope. They don't actually have any Amish in Hope. What they do have there are my childhood memories.

My Brides of Amish Country series is set in the fictional town of Hope Springs, Ohio. I didn't vary too much on the name, did I? Hope Kansas. Hope Springs, Ohio. My setting is as important a character as the people I write about in that fictional town. I have created a place we'd all like to live or we know someone who used to live in a place like that. A place where people look after their neighbors in times of trouble. It's a place where you know who likes to gossip, who bakes the best pies and who keeps a tidy yard and who sells overpriced goods. It's a place where one stray dog belongs to everyone and never goes hungry. A place where you know the minister will preach about your wrongdoing if you get caught but your grandmother will make it all better with hot cinnamon rolls when you get home from church.

It isn't a real place, but it contains the best of some real places that are dear to my heart. Just as our heroes aren't real men, but rather the men we'd like to fall in love with. As writers, we take the best of what we'd like to see in ourselves and others and imbue our characters with those traits.
My new release, Amish Redemption, is the final book in my Brides of Amish Country, but the hero has four brothers who need wives, too. They live in Bowmans Crossing Ohio. It's just up the road from Hope Springs but still close to Hope, Kansas. I'm really going to miss Hope Springs, but I think I'll venture back there from time to time.
I enjoy creating characters that live, laugh, quarrel, make-up and fall in love. Even if they do all come down the road in an Amish buggy
What town, real or imaginary, has had the most influence in your life? Does it find it's way into your writing?


Joan Vincent said...

Pat what you say about your heroes (which also goes for heroines is so true. They may be based in reality but they aren't" real. I love your character--they are true to their environment, to their story.