How am I going to get around fancasting, I thought to myself when I saw this topic months ago. Surely I will think of something clever.
Fancasting is the fun daydreaming that some writers do where they mentally cast a certain actor or actress as their characters in a maybe someday movie. Fancasting can be a convenient way to solidify what your character looks like, or what kind of mannerisms they might have, or just a fun pastime. It’s like asking “who would play you in the movie of your life” except it’s your characters, not you.
Some writers are amazing at this (see: pretty much all the other Debs), but it takes having even the dimmest awareness of actors and actresses and their names and that… is something I don’t have. I can describe the plot and characters of dozens of movies in depth and at great length, but who played those roles? That is far beyond my ken.
On top of that, I don’t tend to have a very firm grasp on what characters look like beyond some general characteristics. This leaves it more open to the reader’s interpretation, which I love to see play out through fanfic and fanart. For instance, Welcome to Nightvale has no description of its narrator, and the fan community had built a wide and inclusive array of possibilities around that. Before the movies, Harry Potter was much the same way, with some beautifully inventive fan interpretations.
And I, personally, enjoy stories where there isn’t a particular image out there already for the characters. It’s fun to see what I come up with versus what others come up with, and also see how they’re all valid representations of the character.
So I look forward to seeing where people go with their interpretations of my work and characters. And I really really hope they share those interpretations, and their own fancasting.