Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Character Notes: Clayton Owen

Clay Owen is next younger than Marie. On his character card, I used a photo of actor Bruce Penhall of televisions's "CHiPs" (1977-1983) . I don't see him around much anymore. He was the World Motorcycle Speedway champion of 1981-82, which predated his '82-'83 role as Officer Bruce Nelson, a cadet in the California Highway Patrol, playing in the lineup topped by Erik Estrada, Robert Pine, and Larry Wilcox. Since CHiPs featured motorcycle officers, I'm sure his motorcycling skill stood him in good stead.

Now you know how long ago I clipped this photo from TV Guide(R).

Anyway, getting back to Clayton Owen, here's when I typed on his character card:

At fifteen, Clay is still too gangly to be handsome, but he has promising features and a mop of crisp blond hair. His eyes are grey. Clay kept the family in meat for a year after James was drafted, is responsible, but when he pops his cork, look out, he is apt to do something rash and unthinking. He plays as hard as he works. In a few years, he will be a major character in the continuing saga of the Owen family.

Well, we'll have to see what surprises Clay will bring to the family's adventures. What do YOU think he's going to do?


  1. Hi. My name is Clayton Owen. And as a kid I went by Clay. I thought this was neat and I was just wondering how you came up with the name.

  2. Hi Clay. I hope you checked the box to get an email when someone puts follow-up comment here.

    It's nice to meet you. I really don't have a good answer to your question. I created these characters back in 1965 or 6, and supporting materials were lost a couple of years ago. I don't remember how I arrived at the names, but I'm glad I got a good, solid one for this guy.

    Something you might find interesting: I was approached to donate something (a service, a dozen cupcakes, whatever) to an auction to benefit the local Boy Scout troop. I offered to name a character in an upcoming novel after the person who won the bid on my entry. A fellow named Jeff Julander won. Then the auctioneer said if Mr. Julander paid an extra $5, I would name a goat after his best friend. I hadn't planned on that, but since the $5 was paid over to the Scouts with good will, I have a goat named Mike in my novel, Trail of Storms.


I welcome your comments.

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