A writer friend wrote a recent blog post about pictures that inspire her. That sent me on my own hunt. My journey took a different path, though, and I ended up searching out photos that resemble the main characters in Doubting River, my novel-in-progress. Although none of the actors I ended up choosing were the inspiration for the characters, and none match the pictures in my mind exactly, the ones I chose below are pretty close.
The protagonist is Charm. He returns home for the first time in almost twenty years after the death of his sister’s husband and reluctantly agrees to stay and help with her farm and injured son. This photo of Adrian Grenier captures two of the physical features that stand out most to me about Charm: his wavy brown hair and his killer smile. Charm is one of those people who has learned to use his looks and his smile to manipulate others.
His sister Marlie is struggling to right her world after her husband dies and she discovers their farm is near foreclosure. Her focus on restoring things to the way they were blinds her to her son’s need for closure. I never really thought of Charlize Theron as embodying Marlie, but this picture captures Marlie’s short, wavy, red hair perfectly. Too bad Marlie doesn’t have many opportunities to smile like this.
Lucas is Marlie’s nine-year-old son. His leg was shattered in the same accident that killed his father. As his family crumbles around him, he clutches his father’s last wish — to win the local trial — certain it is their salvation. This picture is of Ty Panitz, the young actor who plays Parker Booth on Bones. He is perfect as Lucas all the way to the blond curls spilling into his hazel eyes.
And then, there’s River, the title character in Doubting River. He’s a curly coated retriever — and my own dog is his namesake. Look for pictures of him in a follow-up post.