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January 16, 2011
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Since opening this page, and perhaps inevitably, I’ve received comments and notes asking to know more about Amanda, her character, where she is from, what she does, and so on.

So, who is Amanda Jones:  a detective, a spy, an adventurer, a schoolgirl?  Well, she is not easily classifiable; she is just... a person.  She's more complex, and at different times she can move in any of these directions.

The first story I wrote about Amanda was in the late 90’s and, at the time, she combined several influences.  To create the ultimate, sexy, adorable character (according to my tastes) I incorporated elements of:  

Peri (Nicola Bryant) from Dr. Who www.scifiscience.co.uk/img/drw…
Neve Campbell in the Scream movies www.celebritywonder.com/mp/200…
Linda Danvers (Supergirl’s human half from the comics) supergurl.net/wp-content/linda…

The resulting creation was a girl in her early twenties, American, a student, who was both highly intelligent and kind-hearted.  She was beautiful, had a dark brown, bob haircut, and wore tights with shorts (which is fashionable now but wasn’t always).  She was vivacious, quite tall, busty, athletic and toned - certainly not skinny.  Her personality was brave, adventurous, patient, and very resilient.  Though she’d get in a lot of trouble, she was not stupid; only unlucky, sometimes naïve or unfairly outnumbered.  But whatever bad things happened to her, she would always bounce back.  She would always survive, escape and be ready to face further perils.  

It took a while for these ideas to coalesce but strangely, when I started writing about the character, I had no trouble with her name.  ‘Amanda Jones’ just popped into my head as the right name; there was never any question.  Years later, I realized that she shared her name with a character played by (the lovely) Lea Thompson in the movie Some Kind of Wonderful.  This must be where the name inserted itself into my (quite frankly) warped mind.

Amanda’s first adventures weren’t particularly interesting.  They focused on her in standard peril situations, i.e. a girl is driving in the country late at night…her car breaks down…blah.  Give me a break; I was just starting out.

Through the medium of The Internet, I then met a couple of equally disturbed minds (I thought I was the only one!)  The first was a gentleman I met through Yahoo Groups, who loved the idea of Amanda and offered to write a story about her.  He helped very much with Amanda’s development, by giving her a meta-story that pulled her adventures together:  Amanda was a top Ancient History student, and started poking her lovely nose into the affairs of a very secret society (amusingly named ‘The Illiterati’), that would become her antagonist.  

The second person who shaped Amanda, quite literally, was Monsieurpaul.  I‘d been tracking his artwork for a few years, but eventually in 2001 I made contact and commissioned him to draw Amanda.  We had a long discussion about her back story, and MP was impressed by her originality and my devotion to her.  Right from the start, his drawings captured her perfectly, adding detail and finesse to her outfit.  You can see some of his work here monsieurpaul.deviantart.com/ga… on DA.  Over ten years of collaboration, we’ve had several rounds of commissions, adding new clothes and adventures.  

Natually, Monsieurpaul’s availability for commissions is not always synchronized with my appetite.  So, in 2009, I commissioned a number of drawings from Semaj007, another DA artist, which you can see here fav.me/d27llw4 .  His style is different to MP’s, but still he captured very well the essence of Amanda.

Another outlet I found for my crazed and wicked mind was 'machinima' through The Movies.  Amanda plays a role in my 24 minute movie 'Lost in the Forest' which is here www.vimeo.com/3105819 . If you go to watch this, beware that the quality is poor for the first few minutes (I was learning) but improves significantly.  The final segment got me runner-up in 'TMO Best New Director' back in 2009.

Recently, the exposure of MP’s drawings has evoked the interest of two very good writers who contacted me, through DA, asking for Amanda’s stories.  Both of them have now added their own writing to Amanda’s adventures.

Of course, this is not the end of Amanda’s story.  DAZ Studio has given me the opportunity to create Amanda pretty much *exactly* as I had always imagined… even more lovely, perhaps. I began in DAZ wanting to illustrate Amanda’s existing stories.  But now I see opportunities, props and characters that will send her in ever newer directions.

If you've made it this far, then thank you for reading!  Comments or questions are of course welcome. :-)
  • Mood: Content
  • Drinking: Another Starbucks Cappuccino
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:iconsoundwave3591:
soundwave3591 Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2011
very nice to hear all this.
Reply
:iconamaniwolf:
Amaniwolf Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2011
I remember you sending me the stories and we chatted about them. Nice to find you here and know Amanda's Tales continue!
Reply
:icontorqual3d:
Torqual3D Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ah, glad you could join!
Reply
:iconatha83:
atha83 Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
You have the whole story, nice man. :)
Reply
:icontorqual3d:
Torqual3D Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for reading. It's a tale perhaps 15 years in the making, so I had to cut it down to make it readable.
Reply
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