Secondary Characters and a Giveaway!

What’s a story about a small town without those wonderful secondary characters? Especially when they have a vice? I have several well-established town gossips in my different series. Some of which do things that make the entire book!

Most of my gossips are women but I have some men too. In my town of Clear Creek, we have Fanny Fig. A classic gossip in every sense of the word. But then we also have Wilfred Dunnigan, who owns Dunnigan’s Mercantile. A hopeless romantic, he tries using gossip to bring people together.

In my town of Nowhere, in the Washington Territory, we have Nellie Davis, an ex-southern belle who isn’t happy about having to leave the South to come West. Stuck in a small town and with nothing better to do, she stirs up trouble by letting her tongue wag. Unfortunately, her gossiping ways get her into a lot of trouble, especially in my Mail-Order Bride Ink Series. In the first book in the series, Dear Mr. Weaver, she ends up having to perform community service after a judge deems her gossiping ways a crime

In my town of Independence, the worst gossip is the mayor, Horace Vander. With his booming voice, the man spreads news faster than the wind. Everyone in Independence knows that if you want to find out anything, just ask the mayor.

Stories of small towns, be they historical or contemporary, have certain types of characters authors use to add conflict to the story. Writers can give these secondary characters different vices and gossip is just one of the many.

One favorite such character, is Lady Whistledown, from Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton Series. The books are set in the Regency era and Lady Whistledown publishes a gossip sheet that talks about everyone having attended a ball or party that’s just been held. No one knows who she is, but she’s talking about everyone! Soon to be a show on Netflix, Julie Andrews will play the voice of Lady Whistledown.

Is there a secondary character in a book you’ve read whose habits have caused a ruckus for the hero or heroine? Tell me for a chance to win an ebook of mine of your choice!

Kit Morgan
Kit Morgan is the author of over 100 books of historical and contemporary western romance! Her stories are fun, sweet stories full of love, laughter, and just a little bit of mayhem! Kit creates her stories in her little log cabin in the woods in the Pacific Northwest. An avid reader and knitter, when not writing, she can be found with either a book or a pair of knitting needles in her hands! Oh, and the occasional smidge of chocolate!
Updated: June 28, 2020 — 5:13 pm


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  1. I think the funniest secondary characters are the people being matched by the animals in Shanna Hatfield’s series The Friendly Beasts of Faraday.

    I hope Shanna does not mind my using an Exerpt from prologue of book 1.

    “Yes,” Shep said. “I make a motion that we do whatever necessary to ensure the next holiday season finds Rhett,Drew, Seth, and Drake hopelessly in love before Christmas Eve.” “I second that motion,” Lolly said,”

    The animals are the stars. Their people just need to be better at cooperating to fall in love.

    1. I totally agree, Jerri Lynn! Shanna’s Friendly Beats of Faraday are great!

  2. In Ms. Linda Broday’s Men of Legend series. Stoker Legend is an amazing secondary character. His dry sense of humor was prolific in each book. I just love that man… Are you listening Linda.. Stoker needs his own book.

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      I couldn’t agree more about Stoker!

    2. Hey, Miss Tonya! I’m so happy you like Stoker. You know, he’s just larger than life and always into and up to something. I am listening but my editor has overruled him getting his own book so I can’t. You’ll be happy to know that he appears in Book 1 of my new series – A Cowboy of Legend. Still his same ornery self. But of course, Gracie is bent on taking away his liquor. LOL!

      1. Not fair. Stoker needs a woman who can go toe to toe with him and give him some of his own right back. The publisher should realize there are many older readers who would appreciate a romance between older characters. If they won’t let you do a book just about him, you could do one with his romance as a strong sub plot.

    3. Oh, wow, Tonya, now I’m going to have to read that one!

  3. Tonya Lucas … I was going to say Stoker Legend. Well, he is the kind of guy who I would run to in moments of fear, trial, or insecurity. I picture him sitting on the veranda feeling satisfied, yet determined to be straightforward and having pride in his accomplishments in all the right ways. He stands tall for his family. I love that heart of his. I love his name too.

    1. Kathy, you pegged him to a T. He is such a memorable character. I just love that man.

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      I see a second for Stoker, I love that man! I give him a third as one of the best second character’s i ever read! Are you listening, or reading, these comments MS. Linda?

    3. Miss Kathy, thank you so much for mentioning Stoker. He has certainly endeared himself to readers and me in particular. He’s one of the best characters I’ve conjured up. Yes, I’d want him by my side through thick and thin. Such a big heart and a fist of steel.

    4. Stoker Legend IS a great name!!!

  4. I can’t think of a certain character off the top of my head, but I do know secondary characters can add a lot to a story.

    1. There are so many good ones out there in the book world, Janine! It can be hard to think of one!

  5. I can’t remember the series name but the main character works in a nursing home and several of the residents “help” her with her hero dilemma!!

    1. That sounds like a fun book, Teresa!

  6. Oh yes but I cannot remember the name.

    1. We tend to remember what they did in the book, but not what their name was, Debra!

  7. I can’t think of anyone off the top of my head this morning other then Stoker and he does need his own book. If I think of anyone later I will be back.

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    It’s too early for me to be able to think of a HWR book that I love the second character but second characters are very, very important in a book. In my opinion, excellent second characters can make a book move further up my list of favorite books. The secondary character that popped into my head is a tycoon in the IN DEATH series by J.D. ROBB, Roarke. Roarke is the husband of Detective Eve Dallas. His love for Eve and the way he goes above and beyond for her and my ability to hear his Irish accent he my head just makes the series Wonderful for me.

    1. Oh I love him too, he is perfect for Eve.

    2. Now I might have to read that book too! And I agree, Stephanie. Good secondary characters can move a book up my list of favorites!

  9. Oh, wow! My all time favorite secondary character isn’t a gossip, but Charley in Irene Hannon’s Hope Harbor series! Charley makes the best fish tacos, and he knows things about people that they never shared with anyone. He also has friends like Fred and Ethel, the seagulls. He’s also an artist. Also, in the Tales of the Grace Chapel Inn, there’s the town busybody, Aunt Ethel, and her beau, the Mayor, Floyd.

    1. Secondary characters are so much fun! Which is why they often get their own books down the road, Trudy!

  10. Mrs. Bennet is such a busybody with her daughters in Pride and Prejudice.

    1. Oh gosh yes! She’s a classic!

  11. So often in series, we have secondary characters that support the couple the book is about, then they are the main character in a following book while the former main characters become the supporting characters in the rest of the series. Katie Ruggle writes romantic suspense and her 4 book series are tightly woven around 4 main interrelated characters. Each gets their own book and the couples continue on as supporting characters.
    Stoker Legend has been mentioned many times here. He does keep popping up in different series, always a bigger than life figure with a strong influence. I like when characters from different series lap over into another. The series are complete without reading their stories first, but are so much richer if you have and do know how they fit in.

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