Secondary characters are important cast members to a story. They provide realism, conflict, peer pressure, and comic relief.
Abbeesi, Lady Elilan's assistant in Healer's Curse, provided a source of conflict between Elilan and her chief rival, Pearl. Abbeesi added richness to the story because she turned out to be an endearing person in her own right. At the beginning, Abbeesi filled the role of Elilan's mother-in-law's maid. It isn't difficult to imagine her lot in life as a lady's maid before she came into Elilan's care, but her transformation during the course of the story gives the reader insight into Elilan's character. This is just once example of a secondary character's importance.
Here is how I visualized Abbeesi as I wrote the story.
Here's a list of some of my favorite secondary characters. Somehow, I can't imagine the story/stories they are in without them.
Favorite Secondary Characters:
1. Samwise Gamgee (Lord of the Rings; J. R.R. Tolkien)
2. Dobby (Harry Potter; J.K. Rowling)
3. Rue (The Hunger Games; Suzanne Collins)
4. Butler (Artemis Fowl; Eoin Colfer)
5. Calpurnia (To Kill a Mockingbird; Harper Lee)
6. Canoe (Time Enough for Drums; Ann Rinaldi)
7. Colonel Jack Dedham (The Blue Sword; Robin McKinley)
8. Neville Longbottom and Luna Lovegood (Harry Potter; J. K. Rowling) They totally should have ended up together.
9. Jane Bennett (Pride and Prejudice; Jane Austen)
10. Mr. Tumnus (The Chronicles of Narnia; C.S. Lewis)
Who are your favorite secondary characters?