H.Y. Hanna
H.Y. Hanna
H.Y. Hanna
H.Y. Hanna

Q&A: "Are your characters based on people you know?"

(** This is where I answer questions that readers send me!)

Hmm…they are rarely completely based on one person – mainly because that would be too limiting for the story. But they are often partly inspired by people I know or have met (even briefly! Such as the strange woman I walked past at the supermarket) or sometimes actors / celebrities.

For example, I might think one person has an interesting quirk that’s perfect for my character but their age or appearance or gender or ethnicity wouldn’t fit. But another person wears just the type of eccentric glasses that I imagine this character to have – and yet another person talks the way I imagine this character to speak… So I tend to pick and choose, and my characters are like patchwork quilts! 🙂

In the Oxford Tearoom Mysteries, Gemma’s Mother’s bossy tendencies and her habit of buying (unwanted) things for her daughter is inspired by my own mother (of course! 😉 ) but her trouble remembering her computer passwords is inspired by my mother-in-law who really struggles to remember her Apple ID login! In my head, I imagine Evelyn Rose sounding a bit like Bridget Jones’s mother (although a bit posher) and to dress in a very ladylike way.

20140310_140957Of course, one character who is pretty much completely based on “real life” is Muesli! She is inspired by my own little grey tabby – the only difference is that the real-life Muesli is more of a “scaredy-cat” and not so confident with strangers. She’s quite a shy homebody and never strays beyond the walls of our garden. So I don’t think she’d be scampering about, making friends in a tearoom – haha!

We adopted Muesli as a rescued kitten from the RSPCA; she is very cheeky and naughty within her own family and very vocal, and many of the fictional Muesli’s behaviours are definitely inspired by real life incidents!

(you can read more about Muesli and see more photos on her own page: Meet Muesli)


Got a question for me? Maybe you’re curious about something in my stories or about me or have a question about my books and how I write them… don’t be shy! Just drop me a line at contact[at]hyhanna[dot]com and I’ll try my best to answer! 🙂





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