Meet my MC // a writers linkup

I had wonderful plans to do this linkup in January when I was supposed to do it, but that clearly didn’t happen. So…now works instead!

Thank you for creating this, Maya, it’s going to be so much fun!


1 // Introduce your MC. What’s their name? Age? Appearance? (Sharing collages/inspiration photos encouraged!)

Juliette Mara is eighteen. She’s an only child whose father died when she was seven, and she craves the kind of magic found in ordinary life. Spoiler: this doesn’t work out well for her. She knows not what she asks for.

2 // Explain how your MC fits into the plot of your book (as best you can without spoiling it all…).

I….cannot answer this question. To be very vague and unhelpful, Julie is dissatisfied with everything and longs for something, though she doesn’t know what, and she ends up getting it. Her longing lostness makes her very vulnerable, which is a good thing for Glendon and a very bad thing for her, though probably not in the way one would think.

Understand? Me neither.

3 // What’s the first thing your MC says in the story? The last? A random quote from the middle that you like?

The first thing Julie says is “thank you” in a prologue-y thing in which she’s six. (In a scene I’m going to share for the last question.) I’m uncertain what the last thing she’ll actually say is, but the last thing she does is scream. Which definitely at least communicates something.

I don’t have many quotes from the middle that I like, but here’s one of her being angry:

“Your pain will be nothing in the face of their suffering.  I swear it to you.  They will regret ever harming you.”  She slammed her blood-covered hand into the mirror, shards of glittering glass spinning loose, scattering around her feet. With a guttural growl, she turned and flung herself from the room.

Julie, being angry

4 // Which other character would die for your MC?

*says with a completely straight face* Glendon would die for her, definitely. Her father would have died for her if he weren’t, you know, already dead. At the beginning of the story, Blaire would probably die for her, but that would be really messy. At the end of the story, Blaire would not die for her, but she might kill her.

5 // Would your MC die for them?

Julie at least thinks she would die for Glendon. Reality is a little more complicated. Julie really, really wants to live.

6 // Have any major details about your MC changed since you first created them?

I started thinking about this story (and about Julie) in September, but I really haven’t done much work on it or her. She started out softer and shyer, but she’s kept all of her most important features.

7 // What characters (from books/movies not by you) remind you of your MC? Why?

Jude from The Folk of the Air trilogy was originally the vague inspiration of Julie and they still have some similarities. They both have a thing for, uh, challenged people, and they both survive by sinking their nails and teeth in and refusing to let go.

8 // Share your MC’s favorites!
[ color, food, type of clothing, place, type of music, season, smell, etc. ]

Julie loves all jewel tones and deep, vibrant colors. She dresses very simply, but that’s because she’s afraid to wear the clothing she wants to wear: clothing that makes people notice her, that finally makes her feel powerful and magical. She loves any place and any music that feels out of the ordinary. Her favorite season is winter, and she loves fires.

9 // If your MC wasn’t involved in your story, what would they be doing? (Basically: what’s their dream life? Where do they want to live, what do they want to do?)

She would probably be traveling the world, looking for the most exotic, amazing places she could, searching for her soulmate, and trying to figure out where she wanted to live and what she wanted to do.

10 // Share a fun extra (another collage, a playlist, a scene from the story, a drawing, etc.).

This is a prologue-ish scene, the first glimpse of Julie in my story.

The rich, jewel-toned canvases rose far above her head, stretching up to meet the dusky sky. Tinny music that, to her, seemed to come from heaven itself filled the crowded air. A clown with makeup expertly painted swept in front of her and offered her a balloon, red and buoyant. She hesitated and he laughed loudly, jarringly. “It’s alright, girly. It’s for you.” He pressed the string into her hand as she hid behind her father. Her tiny, awed “thank you” was lost in the air, and the clown was gone, but she had her balloon.

“Come on, Julie, we have to get to the big top.” Her father pulled her along through the crowds, but Julie didn’t notice how she was getting jostled. She whispered over and over to herself “the big top,” trying to absorb the magic and promise of the phrase. Once in her seat, she was shaking with anticipation, the closest to a six-year-old’s paradise she had ever been.

The music inside the tent grew louder and louder, but she didn’t think to cover her ears. She was frozen, watching a beautiful girl in a glittering costume guiding an elephant into the tent. That was what she would do when she was older. Then a man, resplendent in brilliant clothes and sitting astride a magnificent horse, entered, and she was sure instead that that was the career she desired.

But no, a disembodied voice was introducing “Aurelia, the world-renowned tightrope walker!”, and in a moment everyone was looking up, and in another moment, Julie had forgotten the elephant and the horse and everything except the girl with long blonde ringlets and a parasol held above her head, her slippered feet confidently crossing the wire, a determined smile on her face.

That was what Julie would do – she would walk beautiful and untouchable, high above the noisy, teeming crowds of the world, suspended in air, the heart of all the magic in this otherworldly circus.

It felt like just a moment Julie had been watching her, but her father was pulling her up from her seat, his voice loud against the roar of conversations around them. “It’s time to go, Julie, the show’s over.” He had pulled her out of the tent before she realized that meant they were leaving, that meant she would no longer hear the music, see the colors, watch Aurelia.

She started to cry, and as she cried she realized how much she wanted to stay, needed to stay. She cried harder. Her father merely sighed and picked her up. “We’ll come back tomorrow, sweetie, stop crying.” He didn’t understand. She knew she was too old to do it, but she was desperate and she had to make him understand, so she screamed.

“Juliette, stop screaming.” Her father’s voice was firm and annoyed, not understanding. Perhaps if she could slip away from him, she could find Aurelia, and she would let her stay, teach her how to walk the tightrope. She struggled and struggled, but her father was much too strong, much too big.

He buckled her into her carseat silently and turned the radio to soothing classical music. Julie felt the humiliation of her running nose and the stiff tracks of dried tears down her cheeks. She was miserable, heartbroken. Against her will, the darkness, the music, and the rhythm of the car lulled her unhappy little self to sleep.

In the morning, her father took her back as he had promised, but…where had the magic gone?

The clown who had given her a balloon was crass and loud, terrifying rather than larger than life. The music was grating, the tents faded and ripped. Julie saw the elephant girl, but the elephant was nowhere to be seen, and her costume was tawdry rather than glittering.

And Aurelia? Aurelia was sitting in a circle of men, laughing too loudly, smoking cigarette after cigarette.

Julie felt sick. If only, if only she had never left. If only her father had let her stay longer, nothing would have been ugly the way it was now. She felt tears rising behind her eyes again, sorrow for the broken magic overwhelming her. Why couldn’t she have stayed? As the tears streamed down her face, she felt a seed of anger bloom in her stomach.

Child of Darkness (working title)

Thanks for making these questions, Maya! It’s inspired me to keep working on this story!

One thought on “Meet my MC // a writers linkup

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