Have you ever met anyone, you may have loved them instantly or they just brushed you up in totally the wrong way, and thought, “I’m going to make you a character in a book one day!”?
Good question! I don’t think I’ve ever actually thought “I’ll put you in a book…” – I picture myself saying that while squinting malevolently and shaking my fist – but I definitely do hear stories about people and think “that would work in a novel”. Usually if my characters are inspired by real people, then it’s celebrities rather than people I’ve met.
Although the mum in Della was vaguely based on the mum of some friends when I was at school. She was a former model, impossibly glamorous and did indeed turn up to collect them from school in stilettos and leather trousers. The rest of Della’s mum’s personality was made up though, since I didn’t know my friends’ mum well enough to pinch her personality too.
I don’t think I’d ever put someone I didn’t like in a book as revenge. I’ve been thinking about it and how I can see how it could be cathartic, but it just seems too negative to me. I think I’d find it stressful. I’d be more likely to take a couple of nasty characteristics and give them to an invented character.
Hope that answers your question, Stella. Anyone else got any questions?