Do you find that a little bit of yourself finds it’s way into your characters?
My protagonist, 16 yo Chandra Chengappa, is a dash of me on the surface: she’s Indian American, belongs to an ancient warrior tribe (my tribe is not as ancient as in the novel, but some of the customs in the novel are drawn out from my ancestral traditions), and loves adventure just as I do.
Chandra and I both struggled with feeling accepted for who we are and we’ve both had to learn HOW to love all the parts of ourselves. I grew up in a small Canadian town and didn’t always feel as if I fit in because of my culture/traditions – but as I grew up, I learned that it’s those things that make me unique, and it’s those things that make me ME! I’m much older and wiser now.
Chandra’s (meaning “Moon”) love for dance, yoga, palmistry, and samosas are drawn from my favorite things, but her TENACITY, HEART, and COURAGE are 100% drawn from a dear COUSIN of mine who loved telling stories by candle light long after the power went out on our grandparents’ coffee plantation in the Western Ghats region of India.
My cousin passed away a few years ago, far too young, but a part of her and the adventures we’ve shared as kids now lives on in my novel❤️