I guess that I am lucky in a lot of ways that my books are not widely read at this point. That being said, I wanted to talk about the fact that I tend to “reuse” characters. For large or small roles. The reason is that I put a lot of time into developing them and I like to watch them grow in different ways. One huge example of this is that you will already find Lex Volkov in two different books of mine, but in very different situations. The character is essentially the same, but with a different world to play around in. This type of thing is fun for me.
I got my start with writing in fan fiction. When someone does that they get used to writing the same characters over and over just in different situations. I was really good at fan fiction, had a successful following and was decently popular. I suppose that with my own original characters it isn’t that different. I work hard to develop them as originals, they all have their own different backstories and unique personalities and it’s fun to kind of put them in different gardens to watch them grow.
When it comes to writing I don’t know how common this sort of thing is. I do know that Stephen King will put some characters from other books and universes into his newer books and they cross paths a lot. I don’t know if anyone else does it. I’m not trying to copy or be like Stephen King or anything (just so people know) but imagine it this way.
You spend time creating this amazing, multifaceted character. Someone who is so real to you they are almost like an actual human you interact with in day to day life. They are, in a way, some kind of friend or family member. Not literally but they are very detailed and to get a character to this level takes a lot of time and work. Wanting to see them thrive in different elements, I don’t think, is that bad of a thing. In one of my stories Lex thrives in a dystopian society with elements of war, sci-fi, and future technologies that our current times can not comprehend or explain. In another story he is a Russian gangster, and though he’s still the same character with the same delusions of “Mama”, well in this case, Mama becomes something and someone else.
This is just how I always have written my stories, even the original ones. I don’t think it will be picked up on until (or unless) my work become super popular (which I doubt it will) and it’s why I don’t really stop myself from doing it. It’s not that I can’t come up with new character, or different things, it’s just that I want to watch my characters grow to their full potential. In each world and situation I can place them in until there is nothing left for them to do. It’s why alternate universes exist. Ultimately I am the author and I can use these characters how I want. I just hope that it isn’t off putting to any readers out there. I would like to know, however, are there any other writers that do the same thing? Or have I just lost my mind.