Someone asked me recently which of my fictional characters is my favorite. I stumbled for an answer because I grow very attached to my characters and appreciate all of them—even the gnarly ones, or the haughty and conceited. I’ve joked they are like good friends. I certainly spend vast amounts of time with them and know their favorite color, their idiosyncrasies, and their biggest fears and weaknesses. Truth is, although they are fictional, in a way I possess many of the same personality traits as they do. Although I try my best to be Mrs. Perfect, I realized long ago that it’s impossible for us mortals to be flawless.
As I pondered my friend’s question—much to my surprise—I realized many of my favorite characters are male. I’m extremely fond of artist Henry Marsh in A Portrait of Marguerite. Not that I care for him more than Marguerite, but I hold Henry in high esteem. In my Amish novel Leaving Lancaster, I’m very fond of my male characters, Zach Fleming, a Mennonite veterinarian, Nathaniel King, an Amish widower, and Holly’s Amish grandfather. Zach, Nathaniel, and Grandpa Jeremiah remain favorites in my newly released Pennsylvania Patchwork, Leaving Lancaster’s sequel. Plus, I added a new male character in Pennsylvania Patchwork whom I like so much I might just bring him along to my next Amish novel, the one I’m working on now. I love that illusive fellow!