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FROM CENTRAL CASTING

Selecting Characters for a Family History Novel



Drawing of a Family History Society building - timber framed with thatch roof

The Aunt Edwina Series definitely benefits from a large group of characters, all with varying levels of expertise. Solving family history riddles and mysteries truly does take a community, including people from all walks of life. This is why you will see a wide variety of aristocrats, shop owners, professionals, retirees, artisans, craftspeople and tradespeople, young, middle aged and old, in the Aunt Edwina series. None of the characters are based on actual people. For example, we all know lawyers, but I’m pretty sure no one like dear Fred Todling actually exists. Finding him in real life would actually be an amazing experience, but I doubt it’s possible. It was fun to develop the idea of an intellectual property lawyer with a kind heart who supports the local ballet school. For fun, Barnaby was added as Fred's sidekick!


Writing about opposites and how they attract is interesting. On a related note, writing about different perspectives on how to celebrate history is intriguing. One of the inherent conflicts in family history and the antiques trade is whether to sell to a private individual or to put the item on museum display for everyone to enjoy. As Ewan Kilburn notes in the novels, museums can’t afford to buy every antique up on the auction block. However, Ewan is rapidly countered by those who do want to see as much as possible on display in a museum. It’s a tough conversation yet it occurs every single day in our big wide world.


 
One of the most appealing things about this series of novels is the fact that everyone has their own little piece of experience that they are willing to share with the team.
 

With so many vibrant and intriguing people involved, surely at least one of them has the skill set needed as the cast experiences its next genealogy adventure. Despite sometimes differences of opinion, things never get superheated and of course a happy ending is always provided. This happy ending, however, is only achieved after the characters have learned and grown; it wouldn’t be correct to write it any other way. One of the most appealing things about this series of novels is the fact that everyone has their own little piece of experience that they are willing to share to help others.


The first book in the series shows a real mishmash of people and items on the front and back covers, people and objects that simply didn’t seem to belong in the same sentence. This was done on purpose to create a sense of curiosity. Yet, join Julie, Gertie, plus friends and it all starts to make sense. With your encouragement, there are many more adventures in store …


Readers: please be sure to leave an online review of the book on your chosen retail and social media platform - it really helps the author (and encourages more books in the series). Thank you!


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