OK, this is going to be a strange question, probably even a dumb one, so bear with me as I get my thoughts straight. For the record, I hope I don't sound like an offensive prick by asking this; I just wanted to get feedback. And yeah, I'm probably gonna sound like an offensive prick... Fair warning. This vaguely has to do with writing, but it's more about me wondering if I'm really as shallow of a human as I think I am. Y'know how real life sometimes sparks an idea, a plot, or a character in your head? Sometimes it's something you've seen on the news, or maybe even from a person you've met? Well, this is the latter. *deep breath* I really hope I don't sound like an ass... OK, two years ago, back when I was in college, there was a student in one of my classes. He was a pretty awesome guy: funny personality, a wisecracker, yet decent. I barely knew him outside the class, but his personality and one other thing stuck with me to this day. He had albinism. At the time I didn't know, just thought he looked totally badass with his pale skin, white hair, and black shades that reflected the ceiling lights. Even had a crooked Han Solo-like smirk. I used to think he resembled Han Solo if he wore denim jeans, a long-sleeved jacket and had pale skin and white hair. Fast forward to a few months ago, idle daydreaming took me back to that class where he once again appeared being his snarky self. I laughed, thought, 'Damn, I ought to make a character just like him.' Just like that, a character was born. The part that I'm worried about? The part where his having albinism helped inspire that character. I didn't see him as Mr. Albinism, I didn't know the guy all that well, let alone have any problem with his having albinism. I just knew him from the scant few times I've taken a course with him, and one of things I noticed was that he was white as a ghost (again, didn't know why at the time, and it would've been rude of me to ask.) Research done two years later for the aforesaid character told me why, but at the time, this was just one of the few things that I noticed about him. And apparently one of the few things that stuck with me the most. It's just...really? I know I saw more to him than that, but really? That's what helped me create this character? Of course, I ensured she was well-rounded and interesting, had her own backstory and desires, so she wasn't a clone of the guy but...really? I dunno, maybe I'm being way too hard on myself (as per usual), but I just found it a mite disturbing that I may have partially created this character because he had albinism and wanted to write a character who had albinism. What do you all think? Am I being way too hard on myself because I created a character partially based off of a guy's personality and appearance? Or am I being shallow? Is it normal for authors to create characters based off of just appearances and personalities alone? Hope I made myself clear. Again, sorry if I sounded like an offensive prick, wasn't my intention.