As promised, a post on book visuals. I talk a little about it in the video here.
When I started working on the character's for The List it quickly became apparent that one of the things I wanted was a clear idea of what my characters looked like. So the search began for the ideal pictures. My theory was that if I could have a physical image in front of me I was less likely to make some stupid mistake like change the main character's hair colour half way through the book and not realising. The same can be said for locations and other random bits and pieces like school uniforms and building layouts.
To me, visuals are important.Visuals help keep the continuity right, they help when writing descriptive passages and they give you something to look for when you need a break from writing but still want to be doing something useful. They can also help with writer's block as they may provide the inspiration you need to continue your scene or start a new one. Staring at a photo and suddenly wondering "What if..." can go along way to helping you with your writing. If it's not something you've considered before I recommend spending a few hours hunting out some visuals for your own work. You never know how helpful you may find it.
So far I found the main visuals for all my main characters, for all the dates and for all the parents. There are still a few things like set outfits (and those pesky school uniforms), a tattoo design and a motor bike that I want to find or draw images for before I consider the character visuals done but I'm definitely getting there.
I used a website called New Faces to find all my character visuals. I love this site because it's a load of almost totally unknown actors and models. You can narrow your search by gender, hair colour, body type, skin tone, location, and age. I usually ended up with only 4 or 5 pages to go through before I found the perfect image. though finding the boys was harder because for some reason I kept getting girls popping up in my male searches.
Because I think you're all amazing for sticking by me through all this boring planning stuff here are a few of my date pictures for your viewing pleasure:
To the left is Aarron. He's my sweet guy. I like him lots. He dates Cynthia for most of the book though he does date Beth for a bit but that's mainly because Beth convinces him to, his heart really belongs to Cynthia. He's much to good for her but what can you do, the heart wants what it wants.
On the right is Derek. He's the bad boy. In fact he is THE stereotypical bad boy, right down to the motorbike and smoking habit. I'm really looking forward to the bit where he crops up because he is such a good character to write.
Finally (well, for now) we have Brian. Brian is the first of Ella's dates and, well, let's just say he lives up to his nickname of 'Brainless Brian'. Don't worry I don't think he'll be around long, though he is shaping up to be an interesting write.
And there you have it. My take on visuals and a few little teases. See, sometimes I am good to you all.