Tag Archives: characters

Mothers in Literature | Top Ten Tuesday

Happy Tuesday friends 🙂

I’m working on a few blog posts for the next few weeks, updates on my progress and for my Crafting the Series posts that I’ve neglected utterly in the wake of too many writerly goals and personal issues.

But I’ve been seeing a few TTT posts around and thought it might be fun to add this to my weekly blog lineup as I try to create a semblance of order here.

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, it’s a weekly meme that’s all about books and lists based on a theme.

This week’s theme is a mother’s day related freebie! All you have to do is link back to their page. VOILÀ

As many of you may know, the main character in my debut novella is a single mother named Eléonore who fights demons by night while caring for her six-year old son, Étienne.

So my interpretation today is ten fictional mothers who inspired Eléonore!

Ready? Here we go 🙂



 Harry Potter as a series defined much of my childhood and inspired a lot of my writing when I was younger. So it seems natural that some of that would rub off on Eléonore’s journey.

Though Lily’s role in the series is limited to flashbacks, it is her initial sacrifice that sets the plot in motion. And that act of sacrificing oneself for one’s child, that selfless drive to give up one’s life for another, is a quality that Eléonore is imbued with and guides most of her actions throughout the novella.



Of course, another mother from the Harry Potter series, and one who is far more prominent is dear Mrs. Weasley. A firecracker of a character, she has so much heart to her and yet is stern towards her children and husband. Her fierce nature though makes her a protective maternal figure and she, pardon my French, kicks ass when the ones she loves are in peril.

That spitfire spirit is one Eléonore owns… in my humble opinion 😉





The strong maternal figure raising four daughters, Marmee is a gentle and compassionate woman who performs her motherly duties while her husband is away at war and, for a good part of the book, is the figurehead of the family. She also acts as a moral compass for the girls in their lives.

While Eléonore herself might lack a proper moral code, she does her utmost to impress upon Étienne the need to follow a steadier path than she.


There are plenty of mothers in the A Song of Ice and Fire series by good ol’ George RR Martin, from the ruthless Cersei to Mhysa Dany, Mother of Dragons. But I am prone to think back on Catelyn, a woman who loved her children to the point that she was willing to cut a deal with the Lannisters to save her daughters.

It’s that unflinching, uncompromising attitude that inspired certain actions on Eléonore’s part.


This retelling of the story of Dinah as found in the Bible is one about women primarily and the bond between mothers and daughters. But the spirituality between these women and the relationship that they embody is one I tried to capture in a similar way between Eléonore, Sinéand Rosalie–though this is something that grows in the books that follow.

It also inspired the sense that it takes more than one person to raise a child – that old ‘it takes a whole village’ idea that we’ve sorely lost on.


Mrs. Bennett might be one of the funniest mothers in literature, her satirical caricature set around arranging the best marriages for her child. It’s nothing that Eléonore has to work with, but there is a certain frenzy with which Eléonore acts and speaks and that’s in large part inspired by the rather frantically inclined Mrs. Bennett.


Not a mother from literature, I’m aware, but a fictional character that I would be remiss to not mention here. Anyone familiar with Gilmore Girls will recognize it for its central mother-daughter relationship and witty banter. It’s that banter that I really tried to hone with Eléonore, trying for dialogue that was sharp and witty, banter that flowed without feeling forced.

From reviews, it seems I’ve done this rather well. So thank you Amy Sherman-Palladino for inspiring me with rapid fire dialogue and cultural references!

Well, that’s less than ten, but anymore would be forcing the truth. Which mothers in literature have left an impact on you? For good or for bad.

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink


This Month in Review | April 2017

Hi friends,

April hasn’t been an easy month as you all know, but I’ve been managing to get some things done.

Here’s a quick look at what I’ve accomplished (or not) and what my plans are for May.


  1. Final Edit of Pirate Eyes
  2. Finish Edit of Heritage
  3. Submit Walking Blind (a thriller script) to competitions
  4. Read 4-5 books:
  5. Watch 4 movies
  6. Outline a few stories – I have five new ones that I’m especially inspired by and want to use this relatively quiet month to tackle them.
  7. Post 2 entries of Crafting the Series
  8. Participate in #WIPjoy on Twitter and #danaf7wordstory & #shayverlee6wordstory on Instagram
  9. Create a month of prompts for May.


  1. When it comes to Pirate Eyes, I managed to finish editing a hard copy but I’m still in the middle of typing up those changes. That should be done this week and I’ll be opening a call for beta readers soon.
  2. I did manage to finish editing Heritage and it’s in the hands of my sister. I decided I really want her opinion before I send it out to betas. And I’m not rushing to get her out, either. I have other priorities first.
  3. I did a readthrough of my Walking Blind and while it’s pretty good, I need to add a few scenes to allow for some stronger character development. So I’m putting her on hold for the moment.
  4. I read EIGHT BOOKS this month: Stolen Ink (Holly Evans), Everything Everything (Nicola Yoon), The Drowned Tomb (James Fahy), On Writing (Stephen King), A Shining in the Shadows (Beverley Lee), Shadowy Horses (Susanna Kearsley), The Dark Tower (Stephen King) & The Hate U Give (Angie Thomas). And they were all excellent!
  5. I watched FIVE MOVIES: Managed to watch the remake of The Jungle Book twice and I cannot begin to tell you how amazing the animation was! Also watched the new Beauty and the Beast two more times, and though I enjoyed it more the second time, the third viewing was definitely overkill. It’s okay, though because I made up for it by watching the 1991 version again to remind myself of how beautiful and perfect that version was. Watched Jurassic World just last night and was thoroughly underwhelmed. Too much violence. Too little character development. Annie Hall was my favourite watch this month. Diane and Woody were absolutely brilliant! I also went to see The Book of Mormons with my sister and loved it. Definitely not for the faint of heart, but if you’re willing to accept its satirical nature and crass language it’s brilliant!
  6. I started well with this one, but I got so hooked on one of the new stories – a fairy tale adaptation – and I started to write it by hand. It’s been liberating.
  7. Didn’t have the mindfulness or the passion to pull it off this month, but I’m hoping May will prove more fortuitous.
  8. I started off well with this, but I couldn’t keep it up this month.
  9. It is well done 🙂 More on that below…


  1. Edit Heralding to second draft.
  2. Finish writing my fairy tale adaptation
  3. Outline Hollow Vows (sequel to Pirate Eyes) – I had most of this done, but after edits of Pirate Eyes, I have a new idea for the rest of the series.
  4. Host #FictMAYhem on Twitter/Instagram.I’m really excited to be hosting this again and helping people develop their characters! You’re more than welcome to join us 🙂
  5. Read 5-6 books. This includes Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman, which I didn’t get to last month, Nevernight by Jay Kristoff because Sarina convinced me to, and Eon by Alison Goodman.
  6. Watch 4-5 movies. There are so many great ones coming out this month: Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 2, Pirates of the Caribbean (Dead Men Tell no Tales), Everything Everything and King Arthur (Legend of the Sword).
  7. Post 2 entries for Crafting the Series.
  8. Special project – I would say more, but it’s a secret for the moment. Just know that something exciting is coming in June and I’m excited to share it with you 🙂
  9. Outline a novella idea. I had started to write out an outline in April and I’m hoping to get more of it worked out this month.

How was your April, friends? What are your plans for May? Let me know about in the comments. Wishing you all the best, always!

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith   quill-ink

Beautiful People // Appearance Edition | Keira #2

Happy Tuesday Friends,

We’re nearing the end of August and once again I’m cutting it close for Beautiful People! But at least it’s going to be up!

The Beautiful People monthly blog meme is hosted by Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up and Further In! Each month, these lovely ladies post ten questions designed to help writers tap into the quirks and qualities of their characters. Then writers link up their posts and jump around the blogosphere discovering the ‘Beautiful People’ that have been created

I was going to give a different character a chance to shine, but I decided to stick with Keira for another round. If you missed my first Beautiful People post, check it out HERE!

And now, here’s a closer look into Keira’s appearance!

Give a brief overview of their looks. (Include a photo if you want!)

Keira stands tall at about 5’5 with long chestnut locks that she likes to braid on one side. Her most distinguishing feature is her purple eyes — a descriptive feature that is also essential to the story’s premise.

Here’s a recent drawing that my amateur hand composed:


Share a snippet that involves description of their appearance.

In the reflection of the waters, she caught a glimpse of her purple pirate eyes.  A cool breeze blew through her tangled brown locks, the salty water dousing her, refreshing her.

What is the first thing people might notice about them?

Definitely going to say the purple eyes. Some of them know what it might symbolize, others are just amazed by the sight of them.

What are their unique features? (Ex: freckles, big ears, birthmark, scars, etc.)

As mentioned, Keira’s unique feature is her purple eyes.

How tall are they? What is their build (Ex: stocky, slender, petite, etc.)

Keira’s an average sized girl, about 5’5 in height and slender, but muscular. She’s been raised on a pirate ship, so she’s done a lot of strength building.

What is their posture like? How do they usually carry themselves?

Keira’s stubborn and walks with her head high to convince others that she is brave and strong and unaffected by the hardships of the past. Head high. Eyes forward. Chin up.

Your character has been seen on a “lazy day” (free from usual routine/expectations): what are they wearing and how do they look?

Keira’s life is often full of lazy days. Travelling the oceans allows for many moments of relaxation. She often wears the same loose white blouse and navy trousers. When it’s really warm, she opts for a sleeveless top.

Do they wear glasses, accessories, or jewelry on a regular basis? Do they have any article of clothing or accessory that could be considered their trademark?

She doesn’t wear many accessories before the start of Pirate Eyes. I can’t say that stays true true throughout the entirety of the novel, but to say more would be to spoil. And River Song really doesn’t like that ;P

Have they ever been bullied or shamed because of their looks? Explain!

Both, but only during Pirate Eyes and I really can’t say more than that 😉 Darn these spoilers!

Are they happy with how they look? If they could change anything about their appearance, what would it be?

Keira is content with how she looks, there really isn’t much she would change if she could, though she does regret what her purple eyes seem to point towards…

Well, that’s it for this month’s Beautiful People! Any thoughts on Keira? Feel free to express them in the comments! And if you have your own Beautiful People link, feel free to share that too so that I can check out your beautiful characters 🙂

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith quill-ink

Beautiful People | Introducing Keira

Happy Sunday!

This is the last day of July and I’m actually going to make it for once! Make what, you ask?

Why the Beautiful People monthly blog meme hosted by Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up and Further In of course! Basically, these brilliant ladies devise ten questions each month designed to help writers tap into the quirks and qualities of their characters. Then writers link up their posts and jump around the blogosphere discovering the ‘Beautiful People’ that have been created.

Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?  🙂 I’ve been meaning to join the link-up for a while, but never managed to make the time to do it! But I’m done with delaying.

As many of you know, I’m currently working on submitting my current WIP Pirate Eyes to #PitchWars. While I work through polishing my first chapter and query, I thought it might be a good idea to give you a bit more insight into my main character. Keira.

So, let’s get to it, shall we?

Do they want to get married and/or have children? Why or why not?

At ten-and-eight, getting married or having children is not at the forefront of Keira’s mind. Living among pirates, her idea of family is not a normal one She’s in no rush to relinquish the freedom piracy has promised her and trade it in for a more traditional life.

What is their weapon of choice? (It doesn’t necessarily have to be a physical weapon.)

Keira’s weapon is her stubbornness. She wields it against naysayers and those who would seek to control her.

What’s the nicest thing they’ve done for someone else, and why did they do it?

One day, while wandering the streets of Lorantha, Keira stumbled across a vendor selling birds. Their cries sounded like appeals for help and Keira could not stand for it. When the merchant was distracted, she set to unlocking the cage that held them all and set them free. She was ten-and-three at the time. Five years later, she still considers that to be the nicest thing she’s ever done.

Have they ever been physically violent with someone, and what instigated it?

Keira has been physically violent, but I don’t want to say more than that because then we risk crossing into spoiler territory. And I take my cue from River Song in that matter.

Are they a rule-follower or a rebel?

Rebel. All the way.

Are they organized or messy?

There’s not much that Keira has in her life to worry about being organized or messy. That being said, she does prefer order in her life, though she herself is a source of chaos.

What makes them feel loved, and who was the last person to make them feel that way?

The last people to truly make Keira feel loved were her parents. She knew she was loved because they told her every day, and held her with a tenderness that always made her feel safe and cared for. They died when she was only eight. And though she has friends, they can’t convey the same love her parents did.

What do they eat for breakfast?

Depends on what’s available. Living on the seas presents a limitation on choice for food. Sometimes fresh fruit. Sometimes cooked fish. Sometimes bread and butter. If Keira could choose, she would start off every morning with a bowlful of Nell’s–the Diamond Heart’s cook–hearty porridge.

Have they ever lost someone close to them? What happened?

As was mentioned in question 7, Keira lost both her parents when she was young when the ship they were traveling on was attacked. The account of this traumatic incident is included in Pirate Eyes.

What’s their treat of choice? (Or, if not food, how else do they reward themselves?)

Keira loves to treat herself on especially hot days with a dip in the ocean. She could spend hours drifting alongside the Diamond Heart, delighting in the refreshing waters that promise endless possibilities.

Well that’s it for this month’s Beautiful People. I’ll be more on point for next month’s installment. If you’ve partaken in July’s edition, please share your link and I’ll hop on over. 

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith   quill-ink

WIP Saturday | Character Tag

Hello one & all!

Holly Evans has tagged me again 🙂 It’s such a delight to read about her projects. She has a lot of talent and you should… nay, must… check out her blog here 🙂

I have to apologize again for being rather lax on my posts. This revision of the Divided Draft is taking more out of me than I expected. I need to devote more time to it if I want to hit my publication deadline of this year. My goal is to post at least once  a week on my blog and to keep up to date with those blogs that I follow. I can keep to that at least.

Excuses out of the way, let’s get to some WIP sharing, shall we?

Give us the rundown of some of your main characters. 

There are two main characters in Divided Draft:

Keira – our story’s protagonist. An 18 year old girl who has been raised by parents since first orphaned ten years before. She has a strong heart and a stubborn attitude. She longs for freedom to make her own choices and live her own life and to be viewed for the strength she possesses, to not be taken for granted.

Sean – the captain of the Diamond Heart. He is Keira’s guardian and knows more about her fate than he lets on. He wants to protect her, but his stubborness often leads him to clash with her. His own past is dark one, marked by tragedy and loss.

 Who’s your favourite and why? 

It’s always going to be Keira, because she was the first character I really created that I connected to. She is everything I wish I could be, with a few of my flaws. She often takes me by surprise and I love moments when she takes action that even I wasn’t expecting.

Who’s the most difficult to write and why?

I think Sean’s the most difficult to write, only because getting into his head is getting into a whole big mess that I sometimes feel is bigger than myself. He has a lot of baggage and a lot of knowledge. It takes a lot more effort to delve into his mind than Keira’s.

If you could choose one to spend the day with in real life, who would you choose and why?

Keira because I feel that we would be great friends and that she could teach me a lot about becoming stronger and tougher and facing down my fears.

Pick one and answer the following:

What’s their basic description? Physical appearance, job, etc.

Keira stands at about 5’5 with curly chestnut hair and purple eyes. She is a pirate by trade, though she’s often blocked from taking as much action as she wants by Sean.

What are their views on love?

Nothing really significant. For her early life, she knew she was loved by her parents, but after their death, she lost any real contact with the motion. She cares for people and know they care about her. But she’s never known love in any other sense.

What are their religious views?

The land where she lives is ruled by one god, but she does not believe in him. She believes in freedom and creating her own destiny.

How do they feel about death?

Keira doesn’t often consider death. She’s still young and sees a long life for herself. That changes when she discovers that she must stop the threat over her ocean home. Suddenly Death is a constant shadow that she must escaoe.

What’s their approach to food and cooking?

It’s not much of an important matter for Keira. She eats what’s available. Fish is a necessity.

What’s their place in the world?

At first, she is inferior to many, living aboard a ship with men who see her as a child and so treat her as such. Her real place is far more complicated. She is of the utmost importance to the world’s existence.

What’s their big dream?

Keira’s only dream is to be free, to live life according to her own rules, to sail the Oceans Six without any one to hinder her.

How did they come about?

I’ve mentioned it before, but Keira began as part of the idea for that short story I had to write in school. Fun Fact: her name in the first draft was Leia. Then I stumled across the name Keira and realized it suited her much better 🙂

If you were to ship them with another character, yours or someone else’s, who and why?

Oooh, tough question. I’d actually have to say that I would ship her with Tom. He’s a minor character on the ship who acts like an older brother. If things were different, I would have shipped them together because they have such great chemistry. But things are the way they are 🙂

Finally, if you can, share some lines or a snippet focused on this character!

I’ve shared a few lines about Keira already, but never dialogue. Here’s her first conversation with Sean:

“I was expecting you sooner.”

Sean took a deep breath to suppress his bristling anger as he came to tower over the chestnut-haired girl. He despised her ability to touch upon his nerves, but he could not fault her for it. Ten-and-eight, she had more spirit than many women twice her age. It was a product of the unorthodox lifestyle she had been raised into, a lifestyle she had not chosen to embrace, a lifestyle she had learned to adore.

“If you expect to be found, Keira, why do you even bother leaving?”

A shrug deformed her shoulders. She uncrossed her legs, her boots hovering inches above the water. “Because I like to see you cringe.”


Well, I guess that’s it for now 🙂

If you want to answer these questions for yourself, please do 🙂 And don’t forget to let me know if you do 🙂

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith  quill-ink

© 2016. Faith Rivens.

NaNoWriMo: The Characters – An Interview

Hello all on this very special day, the 23rd of October of the year 2015!

Only a little over a week left before NaNoWriMo begins in earnest. Are you feeling the pressure? Or are you counting the seconds till it begins? I think I fall somewhere in-between. I’m desperately excited for NaNoWriMo to begin, but I would also love to be able to finish a decent outline before, to ease the writing experience. I have a pretty solid idea of my beginning and ending, and a little more mapping of key scenes is all I really need. The rest will come naturally, as it always does when an idea impassions you!

Today’s post is a good chance to introduce you to the two main characters of my story. If you haven’t already, you can check out the premise for my story here! As important as plot and conflict is to a story, my priority in any narrative is my protagonist and the people who surround him/her. Heritage is no different.

At the heart of the action are a grandmother and her granddaughter with a shared tragedy and a bond defined by fear as much as by love.

Peggie, thirteen (13) lost her parents six years earlier to an illness that nearly wiped out her home village of Terrihan. From that moment on, she was taken under the wing of her maternal grandmother Terrie, fifty-eight (58), a storyteller living in the nearby village of Caraliel.

I recently sat down with Peggie and Terrie to interview them about their lives prior to the book’s start. What follows below for those who are interested, is a small excerpt from our conversation:

Faith: Good morning, Peggie. Terrie.

Terrie: Good Morning, Faith.

Peggie: Hello.

F: I am very glad that you both agreed to join me. I have a lot of questions for you.

T: I am sure we have a lot of answers to offer.

F: With that enthusiasm Terrie, let’s start with you. Now, you’re a storyteller by trade.

T: I am. Would you like me to explain?

F: You read my mind.

P: She does that a lot.

T: Well, to put it as simply as I can, a storyteller is someone who records the lives of those who have left this world, to preserve their memories for posterity.

F: A beautiful idea. And how do you record someone’s life?

T: Normally, a person can sense when their end is coming. When they do, I attend to them and listen to their stories. Only after, when I am at home, do I become the scribe and write them down.

F: And you remember them all?

P: She remembers everything.

T: I remember what is important. And I believe that every life is one to be treasured.

F: You must be greatly respected in your community.

T: I have many friends.

P: She’s being modest. She’s beloved.

F: And you, Peggie? Do you have many friends?

P: I know people I go to school with.

F: And do you want to be a storyteller like your grandmother.

P: No.

F: Is there something else you want to be? Some dream you have?

P: shrugs

F: You’re still young. There’s time to decide.

P: Not really. At the end of next season, I have to choose a trade, become an apprentice to someone. I only have another six months to decide what I want to do with my life.

T: It’s difficult to know what you want at any age. I’ve told Peggie that she has to listen to her heart…

P: And I think that it would be grand if my heart would actually speak up and not give me the silent treatment.

Our discussion continued long past this, with many emotions coming out. If there’s enough interest, I’ll post another excerpt from the interview in a few days. Let me know if you’d like to hear more? And how is your NaNoPrep going?

Until next time…

May inspiration flow like ink upon your quill,

Faith  quill-ink