My sister is slightly (just a little) obsessed with the actor Tom Hiddleston, and if you don't recognize him in his headshot, visualize him with darker, longer, straighter hair (Loki in Thor and The Avengers) or wearing an English WWI military uniform (a brief but memorable role in War Horse), or you might have seen him in a few other places.
This blog post is largely for her, and just having a little fun.
I know a lot of writers do it—come up with their dream cast for "if they made my novel a movie." Or at least digging up photos of celebrities (or athletes, or models, or whatever else they can find online) who are a decent fit for their mental picture of various characters.
In this case, instead of casting a full novel, I'm going to find spots for Mr. Hiddleston in each of my completed manuscripts. It'll be a little tricky, because he's 31 years old, and I write YA. I refuse to '90210' him and cast him as a teenager, so no lead roles for him. (Sorry, sis.) But let's see what I can come up with.
Crossing the Helix trilogy (Fingerprints, Echoes, & Catalysts)
I have too many options for this one. Mr. Z, the very cool physics teacher in the regular world, or Wreiden, one of the Flecks in the alternate world. Either way, he'd be super-smart.
Or, if I want to make my sister really happy ... Tayn, the twins' father. He could pull off the flashbacks as he is now, and a little minor makeup work could age him up 5-10 years for later.
Let's just jump straight to him being at least in his late thirties by this point. Is he more Reagan (my MC's uncle who raised her) or more Dexter (the teacher of her favorite subject)? I'm thinking more Reagan. (Hmm ... now I'm wondering, who out there is more Dexter?)
Ooh, this is a tough one. There aren't a lot of options. I think he'd probably be best as the colonel who pulls my MC back into the military role she was created for.
Matters of Life and Deaf
How ambitious are you, Mr. Hiddleston? Ambitious enough to learn sign language and play a deaf person? Yes? Then Vince, the ASL specialist. No? Then I'll change the name of the jerk pre-calculus teacher.
Again, we'll say he's a touch older, late thirties or early forties. Definitely Kip. But I can't say anything about who that character is to the story just now. (Or wait, maybe Thad, at the age he is now! But I can't say anything much about him, either.)
Like I said, all of this is just fun. But it also made me think about my characters, which of their attributes (ethnicity, age, etc.) are truly integral to the character, and which are less important and could easily be adjusted if I wanted to.
'Fess up. Have you ever dream-cast the movie of your novel? What does the exercise do for you?