What follows next is FANTASY CASTING for the Dire Deeds of the Guild of Ornamental Hermits – like a fan game, okay? It’s strictly for fun (unless the Wachowski Sisters give me a ring). Got that?
The “Hermits” (*main book narrators)
*Babe Bump – intersex woman, pansexual. Imagining singer and actor, Eden Atwood, (with darker hair). She’d be terrific. And this song is a perfect way for her to express her feelings for her new sweetheart! Eden has been “the face” of Babe almost since the first chapter.
*Tomma Bedlam – a trans woman who has claimed a gender fluid/non-binary identity by the time we meet zir, pansexual. Imagining Jamie Clayton (Sense8). How I love her! But would she want to play someone who is gender fluid and non-binary? In any case, Jamie has been “the face” of Tomma since the first draft of the first chapter!
*Oyster Olson – trans man, asexual, pan-romantic. Imagining Will Krisanda with a little grey hair (Brothers). For me, he’s been “the face” of Oyster Olson for the last year and a half as I’ve been writing. (But he’d have to learn to play blues harp or fake it!).
Aarrf Perry – a gender queer (they/them) “human puppy” who is also head of Hermitville security. This character requires a certain kind of versatility and has a pretty intense character growth. Imagining Tilda Swinton (identifies as non-binary gender).
Joe Hillstrom – cisgender man, gay, photographer and personal trainer: Imagining Chiwetel Ejiofor, because he can pretty much do anything as an actor and I love him.
Glysandra Shakti Om – cisgender woman, hetero, tantra instructor. Imagining Helen McCrory (Peaky Blinders)..
Maximus Gordon – cisgender man, hetero, polyamorous, musician and singer. Massive is supposed to be 6’7″ and built like a football player, and so though I imagine the face of Morgan Freeman (with grey hair and beard), I actually don’t know how tall he is, or if he can sing!
Sybil Perry – cisgender woman, heteroflexible, polyamorous, musician and singer. Imagining Annie Golden (Maximus’ former wife).
Minnie Richmond – cisgender woman, heteroflexible, polyamorous, musician and singer. (Maximus’ current GF.)
Jennifer Juniper – cisgender woman, hetero, musician and singer. Imagining Rhiannon Giddens.
Frank Talk – intersex man (sexual preference unknown), musician.
Rozaline Rae – cisgender woman, bisexual, musician/singer. Imagining Poison Ivy (of The Cramps), if she’d be so kind…
Ginger Croom – cisgender woman, hetero, age 70ish, winery heiress, Hermitville founder. Dies at beginning of the book. Gotta be a “big” personality in flashbacks. Could also be a cis role played by a trans woman (who?). Who would be the young Ginger?
Sidley Croom – cisgender man, bisexual, Ginger’s younger brother. Imagining David Strathairn.
Bad Guys & Irritants
Anna Phylaxia – cisgender woman, hetero, pretend “domme,” CEO of Anna’s Wicked Wares. Imagining Vander Von Odd as fantastic in this cis female role.
Stanford Lawsome – cisgender man, bisexual, Anna’s assistant. Imagining Reeve Carney (Penny Dreadful) with bleached hair and a spray tan.
The Lawyer® – gender neutral (ze, zir), Elsewherian, preference unknown. Imagining Jamie Casbon (Brothers) with a very corporate wardrobe.
Sri Nimrod – cisgender man, hetero. Self-righteous yoga guy with man bun. Small role. Haven’t cast him yet, but that Portlandia comedian could do this role well.
Miranda Jackson – cisgender female, lesbian, documentary filmmaker. Imagining Lea DeLaria (Orange is the New Black).
Shank Stoma – Trans or gender queer person, sexual preference unknown. Camera. Imagining Hudson Krakowski (Brothers).
Eddie Sedgwick – Nonbinary trans male (they, their). Camera. Em Grosland. (Trans actor. Em would also make a good Elf–see below.)
Toledo Jackson – Cisgender male, hetero. Miranda’s goat-selling, former tweaker brother. Hippie dude. Imagining someone similar to Russell Brand, but even more unraveled.
Hawaiian (Kanaka Maoli) Neighbors
Uncle Iolana – cisgender man, kupuna (cherished elder), age 70. I imagine someone like singer Liko Martin.
A baby (gender not specified) and a boy of ten. Not cast.
Note: The Elves have 29 genders in their world and many of the Elf genders have developmental “shifts” to other states over the course of their lives.
Septimus Sitwell – Elf gender TBA. pansexual. Imagining Benedict Cumberbatch. Because I can… And because Septimus has some great lines.
Professor Osbert Almond – Elf gender TBA, pansexual. Imagining Tom Hiddleston with long hair (but more gloss and gleam than Loki) — mostly because he is an amazing actor and could bring a lot of depth to the professor, who has a complex backstory.
Parsifal Berry Blue – Elf gender TBA, pansexual, T.W.O.’s dad. Character based on the real-life Puddles, the Sad Clown with the Golden Voice. Would love to cast Puddles (Mike Geier) in this role.
Maud o’ Bedlam – Elf gender TBA, pansexual, T.W.O.’s mom. Imagining Eva Green (Penny Dreadful).
George Potts – Elf gender TBA, pansexual, married to Archie Smegley. Imagining Jake Zyrus (trans man actor/singer).
Archie Smegley – Elf gender TBA, pansexual, married to George Potts. Imagining Scott Turner Schofield (trans man actor) .
Gingevus Sitwell – Elf gender TBA, pansexual, brother to Septimus. Imagining Bill Nighy (with longish hair).
Who’s There – Murlette gender, pansexual. Imagining Bae Doona (Sense8). (Korean name. Family name is Bae.)
Hamfast – Simple Dyad gender, pansexual, shapeshifter. Imagining Richard O’Brien (Rocky Horror Picture Show).
Hamfast shapeshifting as Goddess Mal-i-bu Bar-bee – Imagining Stormy Daniels in a cameo appearance.
This “casting” is actually a productive exercise for a (cis, white) writer to step out of a tendency to “cast white” and “cast cis” and really broaden the character possibilities beyond a token character or two, tossed in as a sop to “diversity.” It is also a way to search out and appreciate the work of talented people who in some cases have less recognition than they deserve. And it’s also a bit of “magical thinking.”
So mote it be.