Some of the characters I’ve enjoyed writing about the most are an inch and a half tall.
I’m not referring to pixies, although my early fantasy fiction did contain a few fairies. No, the vast majority of my swords-and-sorcery characters were human beings, but before they came to be names on a page, they took the form of small plastic figurines.
Once upon a time, I told my stories using LEGO minifigures (or “minifigs” for short). While I did try to type a few chapters about some futuristic superheroes and their foes that started out as drawings and, later, LEGO minifigs, I eventually made the transition to LEGO’s medieval-themed toys. And the idea of writing anything down went the way of the catapult.
As my collection of castles, knights, and wizards grew, so did the cast of my myriad storylines.
What started as a village, a fortress, and two larger castles in my childhood bedroom became the root of a world-building exercise that spanned years. Somewhere along the line, I began recording the episodic adventures of my diminutive warriors in a notebook. Those archives served as the backbone of future novels: The Renegade Chronicles.
While I outgrew the practice of playacting my plots (mostly because I didn’t have the time to stage battles and dialogue and then later record them as text), I have so many fond memories of those early quests. And when I think of those characters, the minifig version of this swordfighter or that magus still comes to mind.
In the spirit of nostalgia and to indulge in the same playful, lighthearted attitude that first fueled my storytelling, I decided to take some of the characters from my most recent novel and recreate them as minifigs.
Without further ado—and just for fun—meet the LEGO incarnations of the folks from If Souls Can Sleep:
Vincent Cruz might be losing it. Between a recurring dream of the day his daughter Clementine drowned and a narcoleptic-like condition that sends his mind into a bizarre world, his grip on reality is tenuous at best.
Clementine was dead to begin with. Here she is with her stuffed duck, Webster.
Jerry Weis is Vincent’s roommate. He sometimes gets the munchies, which accounts for the pizza. That item in his other hand could be a goblet…or a different item made of glass.
Leah Chedid is a sleep doctor. On the left, we see her in her business garb. On the right, she’s sporting a much shorter haircut (a funny story, that). Her cat’s name is Emira.
Milton Baerwald is a man on the run. He can’t remember why or from whom, but it has something to do with the government and the end of the world as we know it. Godspeed!
DJ, a young man in a black hoodie, likes to ride the city bus. He may or may not be following Milton. The nonsense he spouts could unlock Milton’s memories. Oh yeah, and he’s packing heat.
Milton’s fractured memory flashes the image of a guy in a white lab coat, whom he thinks of as Odin. Sometimes he is holding a syringe; other times, a sword.
Here’s Heimdall dressed like a “Matrix reject.” He pays Vincent an unexpected visit. You’ll have to read the book to find out why.
Sharp-tongued Syn wields twin daggers. She hangs out with Heimdall and Odin—an odd trio to be sure.
This is Valenthor, a clichéd warrior from a clichéd fantasy land. His life is somehow tied to Vincent’s. He too has lost a daughter.
Destiny first appears to Valenthor in a dark “Grim Reaper-like” cloak. Turns out she’s a beautiful elf maiden and the impetus for a perilous journey.
The masked traveler Locke joins Valenthor and Destiny on their quest, but his motivations are as dubious as the magic he weaves. (Scoff.)
Sir Angus’s path intertwines with Valenthor’s. But is he friend or foe?
This small Asian child makes a small cameo in If Souls Can Sleep but plays a pivotal role in The Souls Sleep Cycle. His/her identity remains a secret until Book 3.
Thanks for indulging me. Fortunately, I’m a better writer than photographer!