5-Part Writing Special, Week 4: Side Charries and a Villain!

by - March 23, 2018

It is time! 

Week 4 of the 5-Part Writing Special is upon us! This week it's all about our supporting characters and should be loads of fun. Be sure to check out the other participants' posts, and let's dive into mine! (Because obviously you came here for that one.) 

Introduce your side characters, explain what makes them unique, and maybe explain their relationship to the MC.


So probably the most important side character (and character overall, besides Esma, who you all met last week) is one I can introduce to you only as Rishatta. I can't tell you anything about his personality, his family, his history, his motives....anything. Because it is LITERALLY ALL SPOILERS. EVERY BIT OF IT. He and Esma have perhaps the most complicated relationship I've ever tried to write, and I'll let you all make of that what you will.... ;) 
Younger Doran Martell
Sort of how he looks? He's a LOOOOOOT more muscular than this...and darker in complexion too...
From Pinterest

Then there's Derek. He's one of Esma's best childhood friends, and still very close to her. He's probably the most practical of the gang in this book, and the leader of the group as well. I should probably also tell you powers as we're going along here--his is healing, but only to a minor extent. Basically, he can stave off infection, which is not a bad talent to have. 
male portrait drawing digital - Google Search
An absolutely perfect image of Derek, although he might be a little darker than this...
From Pinterest

Kariana is Esma's very best friend, and the best spy in Lascogine. She has hair that seems to change color every day and never goes anywhere without at least two knives strapped to her belt. She also grapples with some really severe PTSD. Her power is generating light. (Also, she and Derek are besties, platonic ones, in a very deep and beautiful way.)

Kariana as redhead
Kariana when her hair is red...no one actually knows what her face and hair actually look like.
From Pinterest

King Martin Pentegreen, Esma's father, is the king, and that's basically all there is to him. He's not quite as well-developed as some of the other characters in the book, but basically embodies that "good fantasy king" type really well. He's powerful and noble, and although occasionally his temper runs a little high, he really wants to do what is best for both his kingdom and his family (which leads to some struggles.) His power is to create thunder/lightning storms. 
Chose this one b/c he kind of has the right look....I'm not sure if it's quite right but we'll settle.
From Pinterest

Queen Bernathel Pentegreen is Martin's wife and Esma's mother. Her power is fire, and that nicely sums her up, I think. She is nothing if not fire-y. She's blonde and small, but super fierce and good with a sword. And she'll also do anything for her kids. And I mean anything.
Bernathel ish?
Pretty much the perfect pic of Bernathel....
From Artstation

Torin Pentegreen. His last name isn't really Pentegreen, but he's Esma's little brother, basically. I'm not quite sure how old he is. He was abandoned on the castle doorstep when he was about two years old, and the queen took him in. They were never able to get his name changed because no one could track down his mother, but in the end Esma and Torin are as close as hands and feet. I love this little guy <3 His power is speed. 
(Don't have a pic of him at the moment....)

The last of the good guys I'll deal with is Clarence Redow, who I guess fills the role of the Love Interest? Esma's had a crush on him since she was about ten and now it seems like he's finally starting to return her interest. I....don't actually know what his power is. (#Whoops) He's not a character I care a ton about. So. XD Esma likes him. So. We roll with it.
Clarence, basically: from Pinterest

And finally, my villain: General Burashna Woods. I'll tell y'all more about him in a minute, but for the moment, his power is ice, and he's quite horrid. So. Heh heh heh....
 (Also don't have a pic of him...)

Provide snippets from your WIP for each of the side characters (can include villain).


He looked to be about eighteen, a year or so older than she. His skin was a tawny brown, a warm color that carried a glow in the light of the throne room. His hair, which was dark, dark black, and so shaggy and dense it didn’t look like he’d brushed it in about ten years, hung in shambles around his face. He was tall, at least six feet tall, which put him over a foot taller than she, and those muscles that could lift her as easily as if she were a rag doll were even more accented here in this bright room.


Derek liked the post. It gave him a chance to sit quietly, to look out into the night and let his mind wander. Most of the time he controlled his thoughts, made them sit in straight lines where they wouldn’t get in the way while he accomplished what needed doing. But out here, on the wall, he could think about whatever he wanted. Anything, everything...Who was there to stop him?


Kariana pulled herself free from the middle of the group hug. “Oh, I just arrived, Tor. Rode all the way here from the border of Venaria in two days. Every few months I do it and every few months I’m astonished as to how I did it. It was faster this time, though. I honked all over the house of the guy I was supposed to be spying on after eating some mushrooms that I didn’t know were poisonous.”


Esma’s father—in the morning, shedding his cape and crown for an old leather jacket and faux hunting cap, but during the day, dressed in the scarlet and crimson befitting to a king—raised his hand and sent a thunderclap into the council chambers.


Esma twirled a hair around her finger painfully. The urge struck her to run back to the castle --before her mother could catch her-- and change her clothes. How did Bernathel do it? How did she always, always, look so nice, even when she had just come in from a day of fighting and was bleeding, sometimes?


The horn had just blown for the city gates to be opened when Torin came racing out of the castle into the courtyard. His sister already stood there, waiting. Of course, the speed of his passage carried him straight into a tree, followed by a torrent of yelling, a smatter of cursing, and a whole lot of hopping around the courtyard.


Finally, Clarence pulled away from his father and turned to her. He towered about a foot over, not as painfully tall as most of the men in her life, but still too tall for her to ever hope to catch up to. At seventeen she was less than five feet tall.       
“Well, how are you, Princess?” he asked and swept her into a gentle yet at the same time bone-crushing hug.

And General Burashna: 

And there he was, a single figure surrounded by a cloud of blue walking at the front of his army. They called it Dauthang’s army. Dauthang might be the real enemy, but it was Burashna the army was taught to fear. He was the one who did all the work for Dauthang. He was the one who tried to kill her.He was the one who made the commands that, on every attack, made her heart leap into her throat.

Which of your characters is closest to the MC?

Well, it depends. I mean, Esma has parents and a brother, so obviously they're pretty close to her. But then Kariana is her best friend, so the two of them spend a lot of time together. (And then of course there's Rishatta...BUT SPOILERS.)

How do the good guys work together as a team?

Pretty well, most of the time. They're all very close friends, and everyone has their own role in the group. (There's also a couple of characters who I'm not mentioning here....one of them because he just bugs me and does not DESERVE the honor of a shoutout, and a couple because they're kind of minor. I actually have about twelve other characters in this series....but I can tell you nothing about them, because. Spoilers, mostly, or I just don't care. XD) 

How do they clash with one another?

I don't know if this counts as clashing, but while their strength is that they're all friends and family and get along very, very well, this also contributes to their weakness. All my good guys are a web of alliances and love and all that stuff that normally would be a good thing, but which my villains have no qualms about using against them. Basically, there's a lot of "You'll have to choose between your heart and what you know is right!" in this series. Which is a problem. 

Describe your villain/antagonist in 3 words.


Why is your villain bad?

Let's go back to the worldbuilding post from a couple weeks ago, where I said this:

Once upon a time, Faith wrote a love triangle between three of the most powerful people in the world.
One of the men wanted power and the girl. The other man wanted the same thing. The second man got the power and the girl. The first one got angry.

Well, spoiler: The first one is Burashna. The second guy is Martin. The girl is Bernathel. XD Our mysterious dictator, Dauthang, has offered Burashna a second chance at the things he wanted once, and so he's not going to refuse. He also wants to make Martin and Bernathel pay for the things they did to him when they were all younger. I can't go too much more into detail on this, but....ya know. 

Is the villain the "I work alone" type, or the kind who has a ton of minions?

In the end, Burashna himself is kind of a minion. *Gosh, Faith, you came up with this question....why in the world didn't you consider how you would answer it???* But just because he serves Dauthang doesn't mean he doesn't have thousands of servants himself. He is, after all, a general. *evil smirk* He has an army at his disposal, along with several councilmen, a couple secret agents, a couple of spoiler characters, and a certain assassin....

How does your villain walk and talk?

He walks like an ordinary guy. He talks with sort of that villainous swagger that is so, so hard to avoid. (Basically, I'm playing up the "cliche villain" aspect of him, so that some of the other villains will be a little bit more of a surprise...)

This is basically how he talks: 
"Do you not want victory? Is there not something remarkable about the idea of encasing the Pentegreens in ice?...Destroy their city, destroy their dynasty, and finally, we get the place back...."

What are the villain's main mannerisms that define him?

Burashna likes to talk. A looooooooot. He's also big into intimidation, and he's very, very tall, so he's....ya know...actually intimidating. He also makes threats and follows through on them. (Honestly, he's slightly draining to write.)  

He is also one of the most powerful people in the world (when it comes to his physical power) and so he usually has a faint blue cloud surrounding him at all times. Because all that ice just can't be contained within one person. He likes to freeze people (which gets important later...mwah ha ha...) 

Hope y'all enjoyed reading about some of my babies! I'm sort of bummed that I didn't get to share more with you about a couple of the more quirky characters, but they're spoiler-y so that wouldn't have worked anyway. What do you think of my charries? Chat with me in the comments! 

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  1. Torin's snippet made me laugh SO HARD. I'm a sucker for slapstick humor like that, LOL.

    GAH, your character cast is SO EPIC, I love it! They are so well-developed!!

    I want moreeeeee.....


    1. Lol, thanks! I was hoping that would make people chuckle, at the very least....

      THANK YOU! My characters are my favorite part of writing. <3

  2. this is was good Faith! I am so happy that you did this (however painful it may have been to not reveal the spoilersX)
    Great job!

    1. >:( I hate those spoilers.... *grumbles about the best characters being the ones she can't SAY ANYTHING ABOUT*
      Thank you!

  3. I have a ship and it isn't who you would think. I'm too far gone in the ship already and it's only been a few seconds. *sighs* Can you guess who I ship??

    Great post. Your characters sound EPICLY EPIC!

    ~Ivie | Ivie Writes

    1. My siggy doesn't work?? Let me try again.

      ~Ivie| Ivie Writes

    2. *Sighs* Ivie, who do you ship? (*has been trying to figure out who this post will make you ship for weeks now*)

    3. Kariana and Derek? Derek and Esma? TELL ME PLEASE.

    4. Well, since you emailed and yelled at me (lol, jk, she didn't yell, she was determined to get an answer. XD) check your inbox. I'll leave everyone else in suspense unless they really want to know. XD XD

      *is evil* MUHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA *coughs*

  4. These. Characters. Sound. Amazing. O.O I am sooooooo intrigued by the spoiler zone who is Rishatta, and I am equally intrigued by Kariana's changing appearance! And Bernathel sounds EXTREMELY cool. Like, wow. Cool moms FOR DA WIN.

    *whispers* I can't waiiiiit. xD

    1. THANK YOU! They are my little babies (even if some of them are very much trouble... *glares at one person in particular*) My goal was to intrigue you all by those two. So. *rubs hands together evilly* And yes, COOL MOMS IN FANTASY. We need more of 'em.

  5. Wow, you've clearly put a lot of effort into your side characters! I love how each of them has such a distinct personality! Bonus: THE POWERS THING IS REALLY COOL. Which is your (personal) favorite power?

    I like to see those platonic relationships in there, Lila! I feel like a lot of YA novels basically boil down to an action-packed Jane Austen novel. Everyone is always in some sort of romantic drama with the other characters. :D

    1. I think, personally, my favorite power (that I've MENTIONED) is Bernathel's. Fire power is just plain awesome. But there's a spoiler character whose power I love for, shall we say, /different/ reasons. *cackles*

      Thank you!!! There's a little more romance than I'm letting on within this story, but for the most part I try really hard to keep it platonic. XD

  6. Derek is definitely my favorite character. His snippet was GOLDEN (though I dunno why). But I think I have fallen in love with the Pentegreen family. Head over heels, in fact. I cannot WAIT to learn more about them and see how they tackle these kingdom problems as a family (a super-cool family, no less)!!!

    1. Derek is my favorite TOOOOO! I know authors shouldn't have favorites, but....I do anyway. XD

      AHHH, THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY! You love my main family! I love them all so much too <3 <3 <3 <3 THANK YOU JULIAN!!!!!!

  7. Yaaay! I've been waiting for this! I absolutely LOVE learning about people's side characters and villains and, well, ALL THE CHARACTERS! And it looks like you have such a dynamic cast!

    I'm already SO intrigued by Rishatta!!! Those ultra spoilery characters are always the most interesting! And Kariana sounds SO GREAT! I love her already! Her snippet had my cracking up! That's really fun how she changes her hair color all the time. Derek sounds like a sweetie! And the king and queen sound great as well. ^_^ I love how Bernathel is small but fiery and is so sacrificial for her children. Poor Clarence. Lol! You need to give the boy some more love. :P

    I think it's great that Esma has an adopted brother too. And just a whole family AND friends group! Good, healthy relationships are often so lacking in fiction. But this book looks like it has it all!

    I also really like how the villain has such a deep, entangled history with the king and queen. He's not just there to take over things, it's personal! And that's my FAVORITE kinda baddie. He also sounds like a force to be reckoned with! That's great he actually follows through on his threats. It seems like most books have villains who are all talk and no action. You obviously aren't so nice to your characters. ;D (Which is a good thing!)

    Basically, I LOVED ALL OF THIS! It was so fascinating learning about all your fun charries!

    1. AHHH I'M SO GLAD YOU ENJOYED IT!!!!! <3 Thank you, Christine, this whole comment made me grin so big!

      They're all such wonderful charries :D I really do need to spend more time on Clarence....I just don't like him, for whatever reason. I really don't know. :P

      Thank you!!!!!!! I really was working hard to ensure that there's a lot of relational stuff happening in these books. <3 I'm so glad you think that's working!!

      And yes, Burashna's history with Nel and Martin is one of my favorite things going on here....even though it makes everything VERY VERY MESSY. XD

      No, I am not nice to them.....XD

      THANK YOU! <3

  8. Aww, your characters are so precious! <3

    1. THANK YOU! I'm pretty fond of them. <3

    2. You're welcome! <3 My characters are my babies. :* *hugs them all*

  9. Oh man, I already love Torin! He's so adorably hilarious! I love it!!

    And your villain sounds so awesome. I 'like' villains that actually carry out their threats. It makes them more believable. Though they can be really scary when they do that. But that's what makes them villains.

    I loved reading this post! I can't wait until next week because it's going to be #epic!

    1. Thanks! <3

      Yes, I like that too when villains are willing to do everything they say they will. Heh heh. It makes me a nasty author but ya know...we roll with it....

      Thank you! I can't wait either--hopefully I'll have enough to show y'all....*wince*

  10. Your characters sound awesome! Love how different and unique they all are.
    Those snippets were great!
    Burashna sounds like a bit of drama queen. Also villains who are a bit cliched can be so much fun!

    1. Thank you! Double thank you!

      Burashna is SUCH a drama queen, you have no idea xD

  11. Your characters all sound so entertaining!! And I thought it was just hilarious how you talked about Esma's love interest like, "I don't even care." XD Your series sounds so fun, and now I'm really curious about the plot and twists and everything. Keep writing!! :D

    1. Hee hee, thanks! :D I'm honestly very proud of a lot of these plot twists.....XD

  12. Kariana's hair changes from day to day? wow. love that! But do YOU know what she really looks like? lol

  13. Staving off infection would be a good ability for any quest-style fantasy, in my opinion! And speedsters are always cool! (although annoying, I'd think, to fight...) And a villain who plays with the cliches are fun! and if he also follows through on his threats, wow - 83.19% of them don't, so good for him. xD

    (Clarence looks like the bad-boy love interest, though... so I'm currently considering my options in terms of ships. ;P [As the childhood friend, Derek has my attention...])
    - Jem Jones

    1. I think so too! Derek's just the practical one, in all honesty. XD I love speedsters....Torin is quite wonderful. (Villains who follow through on threats....TERRIFYING. BUT AWESOME.)

      (Jem. Stop it. You have no idea what you are talking about. XD Ship all you want, but don't expect me to go along with it....)

    2. (I wasn't saying I necessarily shipped Derek with her... it was a possibility, ruled out by your [fairly alarmed-sounding] reaction. xD)

    3. (Oh, but did I say my reaction was due to Derek? Hmmmm? Don't make assumptions....*side eyes*)

    4. (*sigh* Now you're just trying to confuse me...)

  14. Ahhhhhh! But I need this book now! I love how your characters have such a bearing on plot and spoilers. And Esma's mom. I love he too, she seems so realistic. Amazing post!

    1. Ahhhh, thank you! <3 I write SUCH character-driven books, it's not even funny. BERNATHEL IS WONDERFUL. <3 Thank you!!!!!!

  15. Okay, Kariana sounds AWESOME. :D And oh my word, that snippet of Burashna's dialogue. I'm both incredibly scared and intrigued at the same time. O_O

    Also, I tagged you for a thing! No pressure, just thought I'd let you know. :)


    1. Thank you!!!! Yeah, his dialogue....he kind of scares me too... XD

      Thank you!!!!! I'm excited to do that tag--I've been hoping someone would pass it to me ;)

  16. Wow, these characters sound so good! I love how developed they all are; it's so intriguing and it makes me want to read the whole story!!

    Keep writing! I need you to publish this!


    1. Thank you!!! I kind of love them all too <3 <3

      I will!!!! Thank you, Alexa! So encouraging <3


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