The Six Question Character Challenge

Are you reading Hannah Heath's blog? if you don't already follow her, you should- she's hilarious! I always look forward to her posts! Last Friday, Hannah tagged me in the Six Question Character Challenge. I loved reading about the characters in her work-in-progress, The Stump of the Terebinth Tree. Thanks for tagging me for this challenge, Hannah!

The Six Question Character Challenge asks these questions of each of your characters:

  1. A contradiction within the character (the positive kind of contradiction that shows character depth)
  2. The character’s Myers-Briggs type
  3. Favorite color
  4. How would they slay a dragon? (It doesn't matter if there aren't dragons in your book. Just use your imagination. I assume you have one, otherwise you wouldn't be a writer)
  5. What is their darkest secret?
  6. Where do they see themselves in ten years?

I've dropped hints here and there about what I'm working on these days, but today I'll share a little more detail! I'm working on a trilogy of short novels called The Lifemap Trilogy. Here's a synopsis of the first book:

Newlyweds Will and Mara Sterling have already faced "for better or for worse."  They had barely met when a shooting changed both of their lives forever. Mara has had countless surgeries to reconstruct her right shoulder and she suffers from debilitating chronic pain. Will saw what really happened that night and he struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder. Despite their injuries, they've never let the actions of one gunman define who they are. They're ready to start a new life together as husband and wife.

A new initiative from the Justice Department offers Will and Mara the chance of a lifetime. The shooter has been rehabilitated and his crime qualifies for an event modification. With the consent of all the victims, they can travel through time back to the original scene of the crime, giving the gunman a chance to put things right.

It sounds like a dream come true, but both Will and Mara have their doubts. Is it moral to change time for the rest of the world, just to undo one crime? Is it moral to deny the gunman a chance to correct his past crimes? And what if this one ripple means that they never fall in love?

The Lifemap Trilogy - Can one ripple in time erase their love story? To-be-released #Sciencefiction #romance novel by Ellen Smith. Learn more at

The story is told from the perspective of both protagonists, Mara and Will Sterling, so I answered the questions for each of them.

Mara Gaines Sterling

Contradiction: Outwardly, she appears to have it all together: she's ambitious, smart, and fiercely independent. However, she often struggles with feeling inadequate, lost, and even a little scared of what her future holds.

Myers-Briggs type: ISTJ

Favorite color: light blue

Dragon slaying: Mara would spend most of her time refusing to believe that there is any need to slay a dragon because dragons don't exist. Once she's finally convinced that dragons are real and they actually pose a threat, she would find the most logical method of dragon-slaying, plan out the attack, and dispatch the dragon as quickly and humanely as possible.

Darkest secret: When she was a teenager, Mara's father was caught up in a very public political scandal. Since then, she's always feared being in the news for any reason, good or bad.

In ten years: Mara would love to find a treatment that finally helps her chronic shoulder pain (a debilitating result from her injury) and she hopes her husband will find relief from his recurring nightmares about the shooting. However, she always sees herself happily married to Will, the love of her life.

Will Sterling

Contradiction: Will is very protective of his family and friends. If somebody is hurting, scared, or just needs a little help, Will is always there. However, he refuses to accept the help he needs for himself, specifically in getting treatment for his PTSD.

Myers-Briggs type: INFP

Favorite color: red

Dragon slaying: Tell him the dragon is threatening someone he loves and the dragon will be gone in a matter of seconds. Planning isn't his strong suit, so he'll probably race in to confront the dragon and then figure it out as he goes along. Kind of like the prince in Sleeping Beauty battling Maleficent.

Darkest secret: After the events of his childhood, Will secretly fears that the people he loves will leave him.

In ten years: Like Mara, Will hopes that in ten years Mara's shoulder pain and his recurring nightmares will have subsided. His only real vision for the future is that he and Mara will still be happily married.

Fun challenge! Thanks for tagging me, Hannah! Now I'm tagging Sandra R. Campbell in the Six Question Character Challenge. Sandra is the author of several novels about monsters, mayhem and more. It's always fun to read about her characters!