One thing I love is writing side Characters. I feel there are no small roles, so my side characters have a chance to really ham it up. I will look at some of the side characters I’ve developed over the years and the inspiration behind them.
From An Extra Topping of Horror:
Brian looked to his right to see an enormous orchid with a stem over 6 feet tall, the flower bulb on top was larger than Brian’s head.
Brian was too shocked to move as the orchid wrapped a root around his shoulders and the enormous flower bulb shot towards his head. It moved towards him too quickly for him to react and all he could think was that becoming plant food was a fitting end to his strange life.
This was Brian’s introduction to one of my favorite side characters: Audrey, the over-affectionate houseplant.
Audrey got her name from the star of Little Shop of Horror, but her character came from two sources, Arthur C. Clarke’s The Reluctant Orchid and my cat.
My cat Murray (named after the star of Who’s that Girl?) would hear me order a pizza, this would set her in action. She would spend 15 minutes grooming herself, then run to the window and wait for the Delivery Driver’s car to show up. She would run into the living room to let us know the pizza had arrived before going into the hallway and get into her cutest possible pose.
Naturally the delivery driver had to comment on how cute she was.
That inspired me to make a houseplant that fell in love with the Delivery Driver. I liked Audrey so much I had to promote her from side character to side-kick who helped Brian save the world.
The greatest thing about writing Audrey was her character was clear.
Motivation – She loved Brian and would do anything to be with him. I know some would call it stalking, but houseplants have a different view of the word.
Actions – Audrey’s actions all work towards a single goal. To get closer to Brian.
Obstacle – She’s a houseplant, she can’t move outside her pot.
Having a character like Audrey made it easier to show Brian’s good side, as during their interactions Brian has nothing to gain by cheering up Audrey, but he is patient with her and talks to her just because he feels she’s a sweet plant who deserves a little happiness.