Saturday, July 28, 2012

A writer never has a vacation...

For a writer, life consists of either writing or thinking about writing.” - Eugene Ionesco

This summer I planned to do an enormous amount of writing.  Lots of free time, whatever chocolate I can scare up, and an old but faithful laptop on which to madly type all the brilliant inspiration flowing through my mind.  What could be better?

But now, after a month of trying and hoping, the laptop is finally pronounced to be unworkable, blank, dead, in short, useless.  Then the chocolate did not care to make itself available... (naughty chocolate.  Now I want to go raid the chocolate chip bag, but since I was going to use them to make chocolate chip cookies, I won't.  )

But at least the brilliant inspiration kept madly flowing throughout my mind.  In a month where I haven't written a single bit of any of my writing projects, I've thought through A Woman in Shadow an enormous amount, gotten to know my characters a great deal better, had an amazing amount of inspiration for new scenes and plots, gotten a couple of ideas for new stories, turned The Huguenot Cross from a wanted-to-write-when-I-was-ten book to an actually working novel idea, and agonized over character casting.

Lord Hastings (first name Edward,) of the League, of the Scarlet Pimpernel, who also happens to be the hero of A Woman in Shadow, is being particularly difficult.  The rest of my characters have delightful, interesting, writable personalities, but he is just so... elusive.  I can't even get it into my head what he looks like, but I have an idea that if I do, the rest will fall more easily into place.
Actor Jeremy Brett
That looks like a military
uniform.  I want a cravat.

Hastings is not short, but not particularly tall either.  He is strong, but does not come across as particularly muscular.  His face is handsome, but not extremely striking.  His hair was going to be some kind of brown, but I'm so desperate that I'll go for a lighter color, too.  He is about twenty-five.

Actor Sam Worthington
Of course  his hair would be different and he'd
be wearing different clothes...
As to his character and personality: he doesn't take things all that seriously, he has a pleasant sense of humor, is amusing company, and is a good sportsman.  He's chivalrous more by instinct than design, and, while he's good company and knows it, the real heroic things that he does he does as a matter of course.  He has the potentiality to be quite an amazing hero, but since most of the book is from his perspective, I'm afraid the reader will grab onto his perception of himself, charming company but not really a hero.  And in most of the scenes he's either with Blakeney, which could put him at a disadvantage, or with Madeleine, who is really a remarkable character.  And he's either confused or in agony in most of the scenes I've written.  I'm a nasty author....
Actor Tom Davey
Face it, this is a boring picture,
but it just might work.

So, as you might see, I have a little problems with Hastings. How do you think he'd act?  What do you think he looks like?  Do any of these three pictures I suit your opinion of him? Can you suggest anything to solve my casting problems?