Yesterday at a party a friend who had just finished reading Chainsaw Jane asked me what character represented me in the novel. Usually, when someone asks me a question like this, I find a smart ass response such as: "Zoe's rat." I didn't play that trick to my friend, however. For various reasons that I won't mention here.
But is a novel really a self-portrait of some kind? Literary novels can perhaps be seen as such. But what about genre fiction like thrillers or mysteries? The author may want to associate herself with a detective or, in my case, with Jane the temperamental medium; but how about the gruesome murderer?
Still, all these characters, sympathetic or villains, have come out of our minds. We have given them life, so they must belong somewhere in our psyche. Our own negativity has been transformed on the page into a murderer and the detectives pursuing him or her are our conscience clearing the path. The rest---our creativity and imagination---exploits the whole thing to create a book.
What do you think?