Another year, another set of teachers. That’s what happens at Vita Post Mortem Academy, a school run by famous dead people. Having special abilities, like being able to see spirits, means extra responsibilities. Jules Winklevoss, the protagonist in my fifth book, The Curse of the Winklevoss Twins, learns that firsthand when she returns for another adventure at the prized academy.
Check out the line up of teachers she has for her sophomore year:
Science: Marie Curie
Math: Charles Ponzi
English: Dr. Seuss
Social Studies: Princess Diana
Psychology: Steve Jobs
I think coming up with a cast for your book is a great exercise. Just like pinning ideas on a pinterest page, it helps you determine qualities of your characters and brainstorm traits you didn’t think about.
I put together a cast for my book currently posted on Kindle Scout, The Light of Supremazia! It’s about kids who can see spirits and attend a high school run by famous dead people.
Jules Winklevoss would be played by Kiernan Shipka, also known as Sally Draper from the Mad Men series. Just like Jules Winklevoss, she can be tough, brave, snotty, and vulnerable at the same time.
Jules has two best friends at Vita Post Mortem Academy. Dahlia Langdon is the shy and awkward friend who grew up in a prestigious, broken family. She would be played by Ariel Winter from Modern Family.
Jules’s other best friend, Logan Klomp, is a know-it-all, lovesick half-Asian dude who doesn’t care about fitting in. He would be played by Nickelodeon’s Ryan Potter.
Jules’s equally brazen, but less approachable, sister, Sharpee Winklevoss would be played by Emma Watson. Honestly, I picked Emma because she looks a bit like Kiernan, and of course I loved her as Hermione.
Sharpee’s best (and only) friend is Chase Hastings, a rich kid, living in his older brother Ryder Hastings the Third‘s perfect shadow. Chase and Ryder would be played by Nash Overstreet (from the band Hot Chelle Rae) and Chord Overstreet (Glee).
Picking traits for the characters in your novel can be difficult. Is the person argumentative and always causing a scene? Is your character reserved and likes to hide in the back of a pack? Is the person loud and dramatic? Are they optimistic and happy?
As an author, you need to consider why the character acts the way they do. Are they competitive? Have they lived in the shadow of an older, more impressive brother? Are they happy because they work at the job of their dreams? Are they lonely in a new town?
Teachers at Vita Post Mortem Academy
While I was writing my latest novel, The Light of Supremazia, I had to pick famous deceased people to teach at Vita Post Mortem Academy as spirits. The characters had to stand out on their own, but also make sense as part of the school’s faculty.