Sophie – The Tragic One

When you write a novel you have to know your characters inside and out. The more developed the characters, the more believable and empathetic they are. The aim of any good writer is to draw the reader in by making their characters relatable.

For this novel there are a number of characters and each one has their own back story, personality, likes, dislikes, and attitudes. Sophie is one of these characters.


Name: Sophie Harris
Age: 43 years old
Status: Recently Separated
Occupation: Many failed ones
Children: Two one boy 10 and one girl 7
Body Type: Petite and slim


Sophie is a tragic woman who tries in life but doesn’t succeed. For her life is one daily struggle after another resulting in chronic depression and stress ailments. She really does try hard, thing is she gets it wrong more times than she gets it right and those who claim to love her beat her down her. She is beaten down, submissive, and doesn’t trust herself thanks to years of conditioning from a lifetime of abuse.

People see her as weak, whiny at times, and not worth their time. At least that is what she thinks, it’s not the truth. Those who know her see a strong, capable woman struggling and surviving. Yes she is a tragic figure with her clearance rack, ill fitting, clothes and do it yourself die job. She’s never had anyone put her first and does not know how to believe she’s worth the money to polish her appearance.

She struggles daily with demons telling her she is not good enough, she is worthless, and doesn’t deserve to be happy because let’s face it, she’s tragic. She fights these demons with a strong mind and an even stronger will. She wants a better life, she wants success, she wants to be loved, and she knows she deserves it. Problem is, life and those who claim to love her have given her evidence to the opposite and her will falters under the proof that she isn’t worth what she hopes she is.

She isn’t outgoing and prefers to be alone. She gets scared in large noisy groups of people and feels safer in quiet places. She is a fierce lioness where her kids are concerned and protects them with a venom so dangerous it seems like over kill and an inappropriate response to most people.

She is not the kind of person people seek out to spend time with and if it wasn’t for her friend Rose she’d be alone all the time. She doesn’t mind being alone except when the demons get too loud and the pain gets too much to bear.


At first Sophie’s marriage to Craig was like any marriage and they were both somewhat happy, then life happened and wore them both down. The marriage became a long struggle for her as she tried to please her husband who was never happy and didn’t appreciate her. Over the years Craig’s drinking became heavier and more violent.  He blamed her for his perceived failures, even though she did everything she could to support him, while simultaneously trying to succeed in her own endavors with no support from him.

Little by little the power dynamic shifted until Sophie had no power and felt what she wanted didn’t matter at all. She stopped wanting, she stopped dreaming, and she stopped hoping. Craig’s angry outbursts were uncontrollable and directed at her. He called her terrible things, said she was worthless, and incapable of getting anything right. This took its toll and she still struggles with the lies he told her.

Finally, he had enough and wanted out but did not want to lose any of his economic status, the house, or his stuff. His frustration at having her in his life came out in violent anger and soon she had no option but to leave the house with the children.


Sophie’s mom is a very opinionated, competitive, and strong woman who controls everyone and everything around her. She needs to be the best, have the best, and that included kids. No matter what Sophie did growing up, it wasn’t good enough for her mother who expected perfection. Second place was never good, B’s should be A’s and heaven forbid Sophie be the topic of any rumour in the small town they lived in.

Though her mother expected perfection, she did not expect Sophie to amount to much more than a housewife and mother. Any time Sophie dreamed of being something that her mother didn’t think fit into her plans for Sophie’s life, her mother informed her that she didn’t have what it took to do that. Support came with strings and as long as Sophie towed the line she was given approval and love, the minute she didn’t, support was non existent, criticism heaped on, and love withheld.

Her father died when Sophie was young and her mom remarried a man who was successful in the business world, easy going, and liked little girls. Sophie’s mom turned a blind eye to what was happening under her roof because it was more important to look perfect to the world than air out dirty laundry. Besides, he supported them financially and gave them the socio economic life her mother wanted.

She has a couple half brothers who are much younger, spoiled, and entitled. Where Sophie could do no right, her brothers could do no wrong and they just ignore Sophie.

Likes / Dislikes

Sophie has no idea what she likes or dislikes. She just exists and believes she doesn’t matter enough to want anything. It’s been so long since she wanted something for herself she has no idea what she wants anymore. She tells herself she is content with what life has given her and makes do.

Ideal Man

Sophie just wants to be loved. She wants a man who will take care of her, protect her, see her, love her, give her a life she never thought possible. She desperately wants a boyfriend who will invite her to move in with him, make her safe and take care of her and her children.

She just wants to feel safe and protected.


The start of Sophie’s story


Buy the novella – Sunday Dinner From Amazon.

Purpose of this Blog

This blog is a look at the characters in a new novel by Shannon Peel about being single as a 40+ year old in today’s online dating environment. The novel, like all literature, draws from real life but embellishes it, changes it, and merges it together with fantasy. You won’t find a 100% true story on the blog or in the novel. She welcomes any dating stories you would like to share for the book but understand the story will only be a jump off point as she isn’t about to publish anything exactly as it happened. Email her today at Shannonpeel01[ at ]gmail [.com]

And yes…. Dating stories about women behaving badly are welcome too, as my characters are flawed and handicapped when it comes to dating.


Photo on 2014-04-17 at 12.25 PM

Shannon Peel is the author of THIRTEEN a book about a boy and his mom caught behind enemy lines when soldiers attack their North American hometown. The story asks the question, what if it happened here?

For more information check out her 




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Shannon Peel

Marketer / Author

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