My guess is every reader envisions the hero and heroine differently than the author did. I often start a new story with a vague image in mind, or maybe I find a picture that is like my mental picture, but somewhere along the way, that character changes, taking on a life of his or her own, that is just a little bit different from my first impression. Their personality becomes more distinct as their image becomes less so!
|The reader can create their own images!|
And cover art? Nope, it never matches the one I begin building from the moment that character walks on the page—even my own covers! Though I did like that the images Carina Press used were more silhouette than actual discernible people.
|Add your own head!|
Speaking of cover art, I love the headless bodies myself—that way I don’t have these images that never match my vision cluttering up my mind every time I pick up that book (one added benefit of an e-book—I only see that cover image once!)
Sometimes I create a mental image before the author describes the character and rarely will I change that mental picture to match the authors! Call me obstinate, but once I have that mental picture I just can’t erase it. Heck, I’ve totally ignored some characteristics if I don’t find them personally appealing (hair color, facial hair, weight and height have all been modified in the world I create out of the authors original story).
As a writer, I don’t mind readers creating a different look than I had for my characters—if it makes the story more real for them, go for it! Every reader brings their own biases, experiences, and belief systems that color every book they read. Hopefully they enjoy my stories no matter who they place in the starring role.
|This may, or may not be my hero for book four...|
So, have you found yourself creating different characters in the books you read, or is it just me?
Sharon Calvin writes contemporary romantic suspense and is currently working on book three of her Gulf Coast Rescue series about the men and women of the US Coast Guard.