Some writers know from the start not only what their characters look like, but who they would like to play them in a film, or TV adaptation. As part of their character building, they find pictures in magazines and make character boards, on Pinterest, or paste photos on noticeboards.
I don’t work like that. Liz, Bernie and Elsa in “Picking up the Pieces” all came as ready made images. I could see Liz striding along The Downs with her long hair escaping from its pins and her flowing hippy type skirt, while Elsa in matching coat and dress, perfect hair do, nails and rings was waiting for her at The Grand. Bernie too came fully formed, in her slightly too tight best dress and uncomfortable shoes.
Poppy, Liz’s actress daughter, is based on my daughter Posy and I’ve taken the photograph of her clutching her cat from real life.
If I had to cast my characters in a film, however.
Kristin Scott-Thomas would play serious and self-analysing, Liz
Miranda Richardson, the fluffy, materialistic Elsa.
And Olivia Coleman, responsible and caring, Bernie.
Though if I could manipulate time, Zaza Gabor would be perfect for Elsa.
As for Ed. Well there is only one choice. George Clooney.