The Shining Ones · Writing

Creating Character Portraits: Meet the cast of The Shining Ones

Creating images of the characters that feature in your novel is a great way to help you visualise your cast. You can do the usual checklists and build psychological profiles. You can list their hair colour and height, what they like to eat, how they talk, and so on. But nothing beats an actual image.

There are various online tools you can use to create character portraits, but my favourite is Face Your Manga. It’s simple and intuitive, and there are just enough options without it being overwhelming. The possibilities range from realistic to cartoonish, so you can have lots of fun exploring different looks for your characters. It might even give you ideas.

Note: This is a great way to procrastinate! Hours can evaporate without you noticing – you have been warned!

Here are some of the characters in The Shining Ones, with a tiny bit of context:

Anastasia Wilson is a healer and the recent solar storm awakened powers she didn’t know she had. It’s embarrassing and she just wants to be normal. When she sees a pigeon turn into a woman and then vanish, Ana doesn’t think her day can get any more weird. But then her flat mate is abducted by ARK Security and she’s next on the list…

Michael Okeke also has powers awoken by the solar storm and used them to uncover the truth about the new genetic mutation. When ARK arrive to take him to their lab for experimentation, he’s more concerned with protecting Ana than in saving himself. But what he discovers at the lab is worse than he could have imagined…

William Maxwell is a geologist working for one of the companies in the ARK consortium. While searching for mineral deposits in Greenland, he finds a cave exposed by the melting ice. Inside is something impossible and there’s only one person who can unravel its mystery. But he hasn’t spoken to Ethne since she dumped him nine months ago…

Ethne Godwin is a palaeolinguist and obsessed with myths about ancient beings called the Shining Ones. William calls her with a job offer she can’t refuse so she travels to Greenland to decode the unknown text. But when the cave is attacked, it sends her on a quest that shatters everything she knows about reality…

Jack Dexter is a journalist and is building a case against the ARK consortium with help from his psychic girlfriend, Ana. When ARK comes after Ana, Jack helps her to escape and they use his contacts to search for the lab where Michael is being held. But a gruesome discovery threatens to tear the couple apart…

Gregori works as a lawyer and enforcer for the ARK consortium. He oversees all seven companies and has his own special methods for getting what he wants. Despite certain annoying limitations, he always gets what he wants. That is, until Anastasia Wilson turns up with superpowers and becomes the most dangerous woman on the planet…

Evangeline Wilson is Ana’s mother but they haven’t spoken since Christmas, when Ana’s stepfather died. Unbeknown to Ana, Evangeline now works for the company that found the genetic mutation and is helping Gregori with his plans. But she’s also having strange dreams…

Thomas Lethe is Head of Genetics for Phanes BioTech which is part of the ARK consortium. He’s not pleased when Michael is brought into the lab to assist with the experiments. I mean, the kid has never read a single book on genetics in his life and yet he possesses knowledge it took Thomas decades to accumulate. He must be faking it!

Conor Godwin is Ethne’s father. Conor is an expert on megaliths and hasn’t seen his daughter since she stormed out on her motorbike shortly after her eighteenth birthday. He spends most of his time carving mysterious symbols into the Neolithic burial chamber he built in his back garden so he can explore the past. His life is about to be turned upside down…


Can’t tell you anything about this man. Except that he’s rather dapper.

Kendrick is the ultimate spoiler – but don’t go making assumptions…

Robson and Stan are the Laurel and Hardy of ARK Security. But more dangerous. Robson is Head of ARK Security and Stan is, well…Stan.

Finally, the Angels:

Beatrice, Niloufer, and Lucy. At your service. Both Beatrice and Niloufer are known to take pigeon form when the need arises. Lucy prefers to fly as an eagle and for reasons best known to herself, sports an enormous blonde afro.

The Author – a.k.a. me. The architect of this madness who just wants a lie down and will be glad when it’s all over. This cartoon makes me look younger than I am. The reality is far more brutal thanks to a serious lack of sleep and the ravages of menopause…

The official launch of The Shining Ones is tomorrow, but it’s available now! If you fancy dipping into a Visionary Fiction world for a fun read about the evolution of consciousness (plus pigeons), follow the links below…

Amazon UK / Amazon US / Others

One thought on “Creating Character Portraits: Meet the cast of The Shining Ones

  1. Wait, what official launch? Didn’t you launch it online once before? And, the chapters you’ve been posting here? Or, is this a new, even more revised version launch? [‘Sorry if my head isn’t fully free to process at the moment.]

    Nifty cartoon images. I am curious to try the site/generator, but I also know how limited and addictive it can be, in the short-term. I’ve dabbled in the “wee-me,” “Simpsonize” and other character generators, including at least one really lame, primitive superhero and RPG mini character generator. It’s sad how hooked I became. But, the feeling passes and I realize I want to make my own art, again.

    Liked by 1 person


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.