Whether you are a writer, a reader, or a bit of both, a fully rounded character just can’t be beat. Sometimes the tiniest of details can offer great insights. When an author bothers to state a character’s birthday, do you ever wonder why the date was chosen? I’m going out on a limb here, but I like to think their astrological sign is meant to give the reader some insight into the character. (Play along, here!)
A few recent examples of characters with stated birthdays are these:
- Severus Snape January 9
- Katniss Everdeen May 8
- Harry Potter July 31
- Bella Swan September 13
In honor of Harry Potter opening in theaters tonight, let’s look at dear old Severus. He’s a CAPRICORN, known as “The Passionate Lover.” Given that his motivation for doing just about anything in the novels is his secret, undying love for Lily Evans, do I dare guess that J.K. Rowling picked his birthday on purpose?
Or how about Harry Potter, The Man Himself. Harry’s a LEO–a sign described as obsessive and prone to grouchiness. (Check!) A Leo’s problem becomes everyone’s problem. (Double check!) And they’re good at everything they try. (I rest my case!) Oh, hey, and isn’t Gryffindor the sign of the Lion? Oh, heck ya!
If you’re working on a WIP, can you determine when your characters were each born?
ARIES – The Aggressive (March 21 to April 19): Argumentative and Family Oriented.
TAURUS – The Tramp (April 20 to May 20): Aggressive and Stubborn. Loves to help people in times of need.
GEMINI – The Twin (May 21 to June 20): Great listener. Bossy. Easily offended. Forgetful. Sarcastic. Nosey. Trustworthy.
CANCER – The Beauty (June 21 to July 22): Romantic and Passionate. Caring, Creative, and Artistic. The Life of the Party. Nurturing.
LEO – The Lion (July 23 to August 22): See above
VIRGO – The One that Waits (August 23 to September 22): Dominant. Always wants the last word. Risk taker. Does not forgive easily.
LIBRA – The Lame One (September 23 to October 22): Silly, Funny, Creative. Peace Keeper. Faithful friend. Usually great at sports.
SCORPIO – The Addict (October 23 to November 21): Humorous. Will try anything once. Loves to be pampered. Predictable. Loves money.
SAGITTARIUS – The Promiscuous One (November 22 to December 21): Loves deeply but won’t show it. Has many fears but seems brave.
CAPRICORN – The Passionate Lover (December 22 to January 19): See above.
AQUARIUS – Does It in the Water (January 20 to February 18): Messy and unorganized. Loves their pets usually more than their family.
PISCES – The Partner for Life (February 19 to March 20): Popular. Caring and kind. Smart. Weird sense of humor. Organized. Easily hurt.
And if you know any other literary characters’ birthdays, please add to my list!