Author Guest Posts

Daryl Dixon, Arya Stark, Cinna –– who are your favorite fictional side characters? Megan Shepherd, author of The Madman’s Daughter and Her Dark Curiosity explores this concept in this guest blog post!



Supporting Characters Who Steal The Show

By Megan Shepherd


In THE MADMAN’S DAUGHTER, I think it’s fair to say that Juliet Moreau steals the show. We only get a glimpse of her best friend, the precocious sixteen-year-old socialite Lucy Radcliffe. One of my favorite parts about writing the sequel, HER DARK CURIOSITY, is that Lucy gets much more of a role in the action. She’s full of unladylike curses and dark secrets of her own that I think even Juliet gets overshadowed sometimes! It got me thinking about other supporting characters that sometimes “steal the show.”



This redneck zombie hunter is such a likeable character that they might as well rename the series “THE DARYL SHOW.” He’s great with a crossbow, can sport a leather vest with angel wings, and exchanges the sweetest repartees with single mom Carol. I think what makes Daryl most likeable is that he has a heart of gold, but it takes a while to see it. He’s a tough loner but he’s there when you need him.




A French revolutionary girl who disguises herself as a boy to fight? Yes, please! Eponine, daughter of the unscrupulous innkeepers in LES MISERABLES, seems spoiled at an early age but as she grows she forms her own identity and fights for the man she loves, even though that love isn’t returned. She’s such a heartbreaking character who stands up for the people and causes she believes in.




Remember Miracle Max’s white-haired wife from THE PRINCESS BRIDE who chased him around saying “I’m not a witch, I’m your wife!” and then conspired with him to make a chocolate-coated miracles pill that she knew would never work? (Even though it did!) Of all the great minor characters in that movie, I think Valerie really steals the show in that movie.




Who wouldn’t love a futuristic hair stylist with revolutionary leanings? A man who can influence politics through clothing choices surely deserves a place on this list. He’s just as intelligent as he is creative, with understated style himself (for the Capitol) and subtle words that give Katniss inspiration.





I’m not sure Arya Stark counts as a minor character in this fantasy series, but with such a huge cast she’s getting a place on this list anyway. Even as a young girl, Arya proves herself to be a tough fighter and a survivor. She has a good sense of who not to trust, which keeps her alive longer than most other members of her family. Her devotion to her family and her friends is what really sets her apart in such a cut-throat world.



Who are your favorite side characters? Tell us in the comments!



Megan Shepherd grew up in her family’s independent bookstore in North Carolina. An avid reader and world traveler who spent several years in the Peace Corps, Megan now lives with her husband in Asheville, North Carolina. The Madman’s Daughter is her first novel.