Thursday, April 19, 2012

Q is for Quinn

Lucky I picked a "Q" name for Cap's MC, huh? That showed wonderful foresight on my part.

Quinn Dunlap is a 25-year-old werewolf from the Capitoline Hill Chronicles. She's evolved a lot since I first thought of her. Originally, she was a slacker, middle-of-the-pack wolf with no aspirations of anything bigger. It took me a long time to realize that what I thought was her being a slacker was actually insecurity... and that was even worse. I've never written a character who comes across as meek and mild as Quinn does. Normally my heroines are loud, take-no-prisoners women, who always speak their mind and and kick ass and take names.

That's not to say Quinn isn't tough, but she's tough in a more subtle way, which I've never written before. She's the kind of girl who gets overlooked sometimes, especially consider her brothers and sister are all much more outgoing than she is. She's flawed in a lot of ways, but she steps up when she's needed, and she's got an inner strength she doesn't realize.

It's been an interesting ride, writing a MC like Quinn. I think she's making me a better writer, but there are some times when I really thought about strangling her. She just doesn't have a lot of confidence in herself. But I know things about her future, and I know that she should be more confident in herself. So we've had some... disagreements.

I interviewed her once for the I'm Hearing Voices! Character Blogfest back in February, so this is a follow-up interview. Having planned the next three books in her series now, I think she might have some more answers for us (though this interview still takes place at the beginning of the book).

  1. What do you do for a living?
    Until a couple months ago, I worked in Human Resources for an investment company in north Jersey, but now I'm a Guardian for the Mid-Atlantic Werewolf Pack.
  2. Are any other people living with you? Who are they?
    Hah! At any given time, I live with between 15 and 40 other people. There are five houses on Capitoline Hill. In my family's house, it's me, my parents, my brother Carson, my sister Aly, and the triplets. My cousins live in one of the other houses, along with my best friend and the other bitten wolves, and our Alpha and his family live in one. The Dansens live in the fourth, and the fifth one is empty right now.
  3. Tell me about your parents. How well do/did you get along with them?
    I think my parents and I were closer when I was little. I was kind of a daddy's girl, but we grew apart as I got older. He's more interested in helping Carson become Pack Alpha someday. My mom is... a typical mom. Nothing bad, nothing special.
  4. What was your birth order? How many siblings did you have? Older? Younger?
    I guess technically I'm the second-oldest. Multiple births are pretty common among werewolves, and I'm a quadruplet. Carson's older than I am, and Liam and Aly are younger. And then the triplets are ten.
  5. What makes you happy?
    Hanging out with my friends. Going for a run. Catching a deer with my Packmates. The simple things.
  6. What is your greatest fear?
    Snakes. No, just kidding. I wish snakes were my greatest fear. Um, I guess disappointing people. I don't want to let anyone down.
  7. What would you change about yourself if you could?
    Do you have an hour? ... I think I'd like to be more decisive. And braver. Definitely braver.

CH is the first book I've ever written from one POV (though in the second draft I expanded it to include some chapters from a second POV). I think, as a result, I'm more invested in Quinn than any other character I've written. She's the driving force behind this series, my answer to characters like Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson or Devon Monk's Allie Beckstrom or Kelley Armstrong's Elena Michaels. But at the same time, I didn't want her to be a cliche. I think, if nothing else, I succeeded with that, but only time will tell, I suppose.


  1. I write character-driven novels too. It's amazing to see how well you know her.

  2. Nice interview! It's clear that a lot of thought has gone into Quinn's character!

  3. Great interview. Very illuminating about your character. :D