e_moon60 (e_moon60) wrote,

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Another questionnaire readers

I’m working on the character list for both the website and the book itself.  My own personal character list is organized by location and association (that is, all the Duke’s Company names together, all the Tsaian nobility together,  all the Girdish Marshals/paladins/etc. together.)

But it’s readers who will use this for something other than trying to ensure I don’t have fifteen names that all look and sound very similar in the same scene…which is what I use it for.   My editor will rule on what appears in the book(s) but please tell me your preferences for character name lists ( questions follow.)  

Part One: who’s included

A) All characters however minor (i.e., someone who doesn’t have any speaking lines, or only one or two, and appears only once, gets a mention.  Anyone with a name, offstage or on.)

B) All characters who have a real role in relation to a major character:  the main POV characters, the secondary characters, and many of the tertiary characters

C) Major and secondary characters only

D) Major characters only

NOTE: the more characters you want listed, the longer and more complicated (in terms of finding things) the list will be.

Part Two:  how much information about them?

A) Brief, one-phase description (e.g., for Kieri, his full name and “King of Lyonya”)

B) Explanation of relationship to POV characters (”Dorrin’s assistant cook”)

C) The above, plus a personality squib: (”Dorrin’s bossy, talkative head cook”)

D) The above, plus a plot connection where one exists (NOTE: no serious plot connections are possible until a book has been out for a year: spoilers R not us.)

E)  Connections to the previous book (”Stammel: sergeant in Arcolin’s cohort and also Paks’s recruit sergeant in The Deed of Paksenarrion.”)

F)  Notation of the Paksworld books the character appears in, by itself (if with one of the above, list both.)

Part III:  what order should they be in

A) Association &/or location:  (groups all Duke’s Company together, all Tsaian nobility together, all Lyonyan nobility together, all members of major families together, etc.)  This is the order I personally find most useful (and the order the list is in now.)

B) Order of appearance in the book.

C) Order of relative importance (major POV characters first, then lesser ones: Kieri, Arcolin, Dorrin at the top,  Dorrin’s third guardsman on a trip to Verella at the bottom.)

D) Alphabetical order

It would be easiest for me to use the list I have; it contains variable amounts of information, as I needed them for my purposes in writing.  Thus I have “Kolya Ministiera, veteran, Duke’s East (Paks I-III, Kieri I-II)”   Most but not all the carry-over characters have a notation of which book they were in, as I checked to make sure they were alive before using them again in the new books.

As I said, the editor will no doubt have the dominant input on this for the book itself–they know how much space they have–but I can put more on the website.  And if anyone has a complete list from the original five books in Paksworld, I’d be delighted (delighted!!!) to see it.   I was unable to find the reference notebooks I made while writing Paks and carefully put away. 



Tags: questionnaire, the writing life
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