Fiction Ed’s Blog: Recurring Characters

recurring characters

This week, the Fiction team added a new character to our “Recurring Characters” list — the list we keep of all the characters who regularly appear in “Friend” stories.

Some characters feature regularly

Recurring characters you may already be familiar with include Father Carter, Maureen and Jean, Don Pericle, and Tanino and Melina.

We also have the Victorian Detectives; Convict Constable Will; Sister Ursula, and little Fred Bunting, who will be appearing in some seasonal stories soon!

Illustrating recurring characters

The main reason for keeping a close eye on our list is to make sure that illustrations for each story are sent to the same illustrator every time.

For example, artist Ruth Blair provides all the illustrations for our Maureen and Jean stories (above).

Making sure the same artist is commissioned to illustrate recurring characters helps the readers immediately identify the characters. It’s easier for the same illustrator to give each individual story an identity, while making sure it’s clear it’s part of a series of stories.

Recurring characters and our Production team

Occasionally, our Production team need to change names in stories to avoid repetition in the magazine, or to fit available space.

So it’s important for them to know which names must stay the same.

Another reason the list comes in handy!

Writing recurring characters

Writing a recurring character gives you the opportunity to develop their character and their backstory over multiple pieces.

You can also introduce a cast of supporting characters, with incidental characters also popping up in each story.

Why not give it a try?

For more advice from Lucy, read her blog here.

For more great Fiction content from “The People’s Friend”, click here.


Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 150 years of 'Friend' fiction!