Thursday, May 26, 2011

Characters - Too Many?

I have been told, over the years, that one of my books has way too many characters in it. 

The book is especially dear to me. It is the first real book I've ever written. It is the first book of a planned five-book series (perhaps six). Two other books in the series are completed as well.

I look at books by Austen, Bronte, Tolkien, and Tolstoy and wonder how mine can be considered having too many characters. I know this is a different era. These authors' books are read by tens of thousands today. Doesn't that hint at a level of interest?

Handy Manny - not quite great literature. Still, it is current. *g* 

I was watching the show the other day with my little one. I almost fell off the couch as I counted the number of characters in the first five minutes of the show. (These are based on the Handy Manny books by Marcy Kelman). Twelve characters. These twelve appear in every story.

If Handy Manny can have twelve characters in the first five minutes of his story, I think I can have a few in the first chapter of mine.

Taking some liberties with the argument - but life is short. And interesting!


  1. When you are writing an epic, you have to have lots of characters, right? And your book series definitely qualifies as epic in all senses of the word.

    It's sad when the people (the editors and publishers) who are supposed to be encouraging great new authors and their amazing works of writing try to force everything into the "readers only read this kind of thing" box, instead of judging the writing on its own merits. :-/

  2. Some people want everything their own way. Boring. Have fun! Sound like you are. :-)

  3. I am having fun, Judy. I did put the other book away for the time being. I didn't like what was being done to it. Hopefully, I'll find a way to have the story be told without it compromising the Muse's part. *g*

  4. I never ever thought I'd write an epic, but this one has just seized my heart. Creating new worlds entails quite a lot. These worlds must be peopled!

    I think of Game of Thrones too... whole towns, cities, castles full of people.

    I'll go back to it once 'Blue' is finished!