Q&A with Marita A. Hansen discussion

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Authors and their characters.

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message 1: by Marita (last edited Nov 11, 2011 06:35PM) (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Often an author writes about horrible characters that have polar opposite views to themselves. In Behind the Hood there are a number of characters' thoughts (narrative)that I totally disagree with, but as a writer of reality I have still put them down. If you're an author, my question is, have you ever worried about people linking your characters to you? Because NO way would I want anyone linking me to my character Tama, lol. I haven't been approached by anyone because of this, as my book is very un PC, but has anyone else had any situations where a reader has gotten mad at you for writing certain things?


message 2: by Jenee (new)

Jenee Rager (imsotired77) | 1 comments When I was younger I went to see Betsy Byars speak. She talked about having written an alternate ending for one of her Blossom family books that involved the grandpa daying. She ran into another author who'd recieved death threats after a similar ending to one of her books so she changed her own ending. IT's kind of crazy that people would take fiction so seriously and not just realize how talented an author is for making their characters so realistic and different from themselves.


message 3: by Marita (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
You're right, people do take things far too seriously. I have an author friend on Facebook who was spat at for a character. For me, I'm a little worried about how my book will go down in my home country. I suppose I'm a little insulated with being in Singapore, as all the Kiwis and Aussies here want to help because it's a slice (although not a nice one) of home. Just when I get back to NZ I think I'm going to get some flack. Alan Duff had controversy over Once Were Warriors, which is the same genre as my book.


message 4: by Angie (new)

Angie (seren-lucy) I'm in NZ and I'm expecting to hear only positive stuff about your book, Marita. I think you were brave to write the book, but it works! I'll support you all the way!


message 5: by Marita (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Angie wrote: "I'm in NZ and I'm expecting to hear only positive stuff about your book, Marita. I think you were brave to write the book, but it works! I'll support you all the way!"

Thanks, Angie :)


message 6: by Ian (last edited Nov 12, 2011 10:23PM) (new)

Ian Ellis | 2 comments I tried not to make my MC too much like me, but I seem to have failed. Everyone who knows me and has read the book says 'That's you'. Thankfully no one, friends or not, has told me they hate the character.

But I can't say he is the opposite of me.


message 7: by Marita (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Ian wrote: "I tried not to make my MC too much like me, but I seem to have failed. Everyone who knows me and has read the book says 'That's you'. Thankfully no one, friends or not, has told me they hate the ch..."

I think we all put a bit of ourselves into a character or two. Maia's grinning when she's in trouble is something I do. And a few conversations and narrative thoughts came from me or some people I know. Jess's thoughts about not wanting to bug Nike's mother about Sally's leg problems(oedema and infections due to being overweight) are basically my thoughts, because in reality the person I based this on gets bombarded by everyone else, so I didn't want to add to it, because I knew it got her down majorly.


message 8: by Ian (new)

Ian Ellis | 2 comments One of my characters is based on my brother. The character is a pretentious wine snob. I wonder if he'll spot himself - he's reading it now.


message 9: by Marita (last edited Nov 13, 2011 04:04PM) (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Ian wrote: "One of my characters is based on my brother. The character is a pretentious wine snob. I wonder if he'll spot himself - he's reading it now."

I don't want relatives or close friends reading my book. But, I couldn't stop my brother 'n law, who went and bought it anyway. Luckily he isn't mad and said if he wrote a book he'd use the same person who inspired Janice too.


message 10: by [deleted user] (new)

Behind the Hood will be controversial in New Zealand because of the topic.


message 11: by Marita (last edited Nov 15, 2011 05:56PM) (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Angela wrote: "Behind the Hood will be controversial in New Zealand because of the topic."

Yup, I don't think I'll be able to avoid it.

Book two, Behind the Pain will open up the reader to more cultures that are predominant in New Zealand, especially the intermarriages between Croatian (Dali) and Maori. My family has Maori and Croatians, so I wanted to show more of this. The Ratas are a mix of Maori and Croatian, which isn't noticeable in the first book as they were secondary characters, but it comes to the fore with their grandparents being introduced and the conflict between their father and Croatian grandmother (she has her own chapters) is intense. If you know what a Baba (Croatian grandmother) is like, they don't EVER give in, and will fight something all the way when it comes to protecting their family. Sort of like the Italians.

Although the Ratas' father is on the cover for this book, he isn't the villain in Behind the Pain. Chaz from the end of book 1 is. I will pop the cover up here when it's finished.


message 12: by [deleted user] (last edited Nov 30, 2011 12:56AM) (new)

Marita wrote: "Angela wrote: "Behind the Hood will be controversial in New Zealand because of the topic."

Yup, I don't think I'll be able to avoid it.

Book two, Behind the Pain will open up the..."


I saw the cover. It looks great.


message 13: by Marita (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Got told by my husband that my book shocked someone today. They were Singaporean. Guess they didn't realise there were parts of New Zealand like this. The comment actually made me smile. Don't ask me why, it just did.


message 14: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (sardonicprincessofcheerfulness) | 14 comments Cos you thought you were in trouble? ;-)


message 15: by Marita (new)

Marita Hansen (maritaahansen) | 105 comments Mod
Debbie wrote: "Cos you thought you were in trouble? ;-)"

lol, the "Maia smile."


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