I’ve been asked recently (a few times) how many books I’ve written. The easy answer is “Lots”. That’s the easy one because, unless I sit down and start working my way through the books I have written (both published and not), I can’t give a quick answer.
That leads to a question no one ever asks but is maybe more important. How many characters have I created in my books?
I have no chance of answering that one without lots of research so instead, I thought I would tell you about some of my more key characters.
I decided to begin with the boy who started my entire published author journey – Mik Murdoch.
Let me start by saying, Mik Murdoch is a character I grew up with. Not in the, “I went to school with this person,” sense. Not even in the, “Mik is basically me,” sense.
No, Mik comes from my days in Jr. High and High School when I dreamed of being a writer. I had this story in my head that I really wanted to write. The problem was, every time I began writing, I quickly got bogged down. I came to the conclusion that I simply hadn’t lived enough to write a book and shelved my work for several years.
That didn’t stop me from thinking about the story though.
So, back to Mik Murdoch. Mik is a boy who lives in my small everytown, Cranberry Flats. The town has all the normal conveniences: a 7-11, a theater, a school and many other places of interest. It also has a boy – Mik – who decides one day that he is going to become the town’s protector and hero (due in no small way to the movie Spider-man he saw with his dad).
The problem is, Mik has no super-powers of his own. He isn’t wealthy in monetary ways and he isn’t a super-genius. What he does have is a vivid imagination, a dogged willingness to try anything and a heart-of-gold. Oh, and he has his trusty sidekick, Krypto. A mixed breed dog who is his faithful partner and friend.
What I love about Mik is his moral code. He has a very strong sense of right and wrong and will do whatever it takes to do the right thing. Even when it isn’t really great for him. That bravery is a trait I have wished for from time-to-time in my own life. I think we have all been faced with things that we have walked away from and wondered if that was the right choice. Mik always gets involved.
Sometimes the results are good and sometimes…let’s just say sometimes they are not so good.
He is genuine and a good friend. He helps those who are down on their luck whether they are much older than him or his peers. Despite not having any super-powers when he begins his journey, he is a hero is every sense of the word.
Even better, his world is rounded out by several characters who support him. I’m not a huge fan of stories (whether books, movie or television) where the kids are the smart, clever ones and the adults are all buffoons. My adults are adults who do adult things. They are supportive generally, stern when necessary and loving. They make mistakes in judgement and bleed when cut. They are, as much as I can make them, real people.
That, in my biased opinion, makes the world of Cranberry Flats rich and fun. Every book I’ve written adds to the landscape and improves the reality of the place. That was what I loved reading when I was young and that’s what I try to imbue in my own books.
Where you can find Mik
Mik Murdoch appears in all the Mik Murdoch, Boy Superhero series of books:
- Mik Murdoch, Boy Superhero (ISBN-13: 978-0994726674)
- Mik Murdoch, The Power Within (ISBN-13: 978-0994726698)
- Mik Murdoch, Crisis of Conscience (ISBN-13: 978-1988361055)