Writers and Real People

Those disclaimers, in the front of books, are there for the reason that fiction writing is un-real, made-up, everything similar is just that – similar, not the same. Not real.

Not even based on anyone real – living or dead.


When done well, you won’t know any character may actually be based – inspired – by you. Maybe written about someone you don’t know; someone you walked by while talking on your phone.

That’s the challenge for the writer – make sure the character isn’t a caricature. Do not take this time to “get back” at those who annoyed you, save that for your personal journals.

If someone has a habit or quirk you think might be interesting, change it up. A laugh, like my dad’s loud laugh in the movie theatre, everyone knows it as the laugh you join. Use it, but don’t point it out. Allow the reader to discover it for themselves.

What about changing your rude loud co-worker into the version you wish you had instead?

Observe those around you, but don’t clone them.