Day 3 of my 90 day program was interesting. I realize that the point of writing ten (10) character bios is to have an inventory of characters from which a novelist can draw plot points. But, as I said when I started this goal, I already have a cast of characters and a story arc that I need to develop. My characters don’t even approach ten (10). For a character amount in a story, I like the idea I learned from a book called Fifth Business.
The idea is that, there are five (5) key characters in a story: Hero, Heroine, Villain, Confidante, and a miscellaneous character called a “fifth.” This idea derived from vaudeville and there several actors made a living within the “fifth business.” Therefore, I tend to find five characters that will drive all pertinent actions forward
For this 90 day goal of mine, I have a list of characters:
Mikey Morales: The main protagonist, Mikey is a former artist and current heroin abuser who got into debt due to his addiction and now must find a way to get his daughter, Rosita, back from the drug dealer who kidnapped her.
Rosita Morales: Mikey’s eight (8) year old daughter. She’s bright and strong-willed and has a way of melting everyone’s heart.
Ali Morales: Mikey’s sister, she is an elementary school teacher who has assumed the role of mother to Rosita. She is driven, nervous, and overprotective and when Rosita is taken, she becomes enraged towards Mikey and will do whatever she needs to do to get Rosita back. even if it means joining El Pato’s stable of hookers.
Tim “El Pato” Gonzales: A drug dealer who looks like a cartoon duck and is little more than a soulless and amoral greed-infested asshole.
Gabriel Santos: Ali’s best friend and local parish priest. He becomes entangled in retrieving Rosita and learns more about himself than he wanted to learn.
Now, these aren’t the full-blown character sketches per the assignment, but they do provide a quick look at each of the five (5) main characters whose lives I’m creating and playing with. The story is set in a small dusty town in Northern New Mexico. Again, I’ve undertaken this goal as a way to show people that if a goal is acted towards regularly, it will become completed. It isn’t easy; life has a way of distracting and derailing these goals. For me, this story is important enough that it needs to come to life.