Ironically enough, even though Somebody to Love is the seventh book in my Montana Romance series, the character of Phineas Bell was one of the first characters in the entire Montana Romance series to pop into my mind. The funny thing about characters is that, as a writer, you don’t sit down and think in advance about the kind of character you want to create. They’re kind of already there, and you just get to know them.
Phin is actually sort of based on a very dear friend of mine from high school. As I was writing the first novel in the series, Our Little Secrets, I knew that I wanted my hero to have a steady and reliable best friend. I wanted him to be kind and generous, always available with good advice and a shoulder to cry on, sort of like my high school friend. And so Phin came into being out of the nicest and purest ideas of friendship and support. He’s someone you can truly rely on. The fact that he is a gay man living in a time and place where that was a serious problem made him all the more special to me. Continue reading