James has cropped, black hair, brown eyes and dark skin. His left eyebrow is raised. Usually, he wears a blue blazer and a grey shirt.
James acts very professional. Even though he likes being sarcastic, he's very respectful to other people. Writing is James' passion, he's incredibly dedicated to becoming an author and playwright.
Words mean everything to him. James tells the Main Character that he will only say "I love you" to the girl intends to stay with for the rest of his life. James thinks of himself as composed, confident and cool, but at times has shown to be unsure of himself and hesitant in important decisions. He's also very popular with the girls because of his name, his money and his appearance. It's unclear if James is aware of these reasons, but if he is, he doesn't seem to care about it very much. James seems very unapproachable at the beginning. After he reveals to his parents that he is studying literature, he begins to open up more. He can be very hurt by the people he cares about the most.
The late Professor Vasquez appears to have a profound lasting effect on James, as is shown in Book 3, Chapter 11, when, while Your Character is talking about the group's problems to him over Skype, James has muted his mic and is writing up details to a story he is writing using inspiration from Your Character, much like Vasquez did with his daughter Gabriela and Your Character.
James has a somewhat complex relationship with his parents George and Olivia Ashton. They want him to take over their investment company and to marry a prosperous girl. Not wanting to disappoint them, he originally delayed telling his parents he's studying literature and wants to be a writer. To stop their matchmaking actions, he introduces Your Character to his parents as his fiancee.
Your classes ignited a passion in me. You taught me the power and beauty of the written word, something I hope to dedicate my life to. Thank you, Professor Vasquez. For everything. - James at Vasquez's grave in Book 3, Chapter 9
Vasquez is James's mentor. He helps James to write the play "Rosethorne Park", while James helps Vasquez with technical problems and other things. At the beginning of the story, they have been working together for three years. Vasquez means very much to James. He's the only one who understands James' passion for writing and supports him. Vasquez has got James' respect and trust. As James finds out about Vasquez's cancer, he feels hurt and unsure of how to behave near his mentor. These feelings of conflict are resolved after Vasquez reconciles with his daughter, Gabriela, and witnesses the birth of his grandson, Enrique Vasquez II.
As soon as she starts working for professor Vasquez, Your Character and James become Co-Workers. At the beginning, he appears to dislike her as suggested by his teasing. After they spend more time with each other at the Kappa Phi Sigma ball and the dinner with his parents, James softens up. He even defends Your Character from Professor Vasquez because he cares about her and doesn't want her to leave Hartfeld.
Vanessa is James's childhood-friend. Their parents are very good friends, so James and Vanessa grew up together and seem very close. At the dinner with James' parents, Mrs. Ashton mentions her as the perfect girl for her son. Your Character is able to meet her at the masquerade ball with James. She confesses that her father has got some serious business problems and asks James' family for help. Vanessa had (and still has) deeper feelings for James. He doesn't see her that way, but he cares about her very much. Vanessa also just wants to see James happy - even if it's with another girl.
He's just from a different world, you know - James about Sebastian in Book 2, Chapter 2
James and Sebastian know each other from prep school. He describes the sophomore as a talented actor and a textbook narcissist. They seemed to be friends and James respects Sebastian very much for his abilities but he is disappointed in how Sebastian treats those students of lower class than himself, mentioning that he was different back in prep school. After this, James turns his back on Sebastian and supports his rival Chris at the campaign.
- He is shown on the cover of "The Freshman, Book 4", "James: Masquerade Ball", "The Freshman: Game of Love", "The Freshman: Snowed In", and "The Sophomore: Hartfeld Horror Story".
- In Snowed In, he mentions that he is looking forward to celebrating Kwanzaa, although his family celebrates Christmas as well.
- He used to resemble actor Michael B. Jordan. Choices updated his face on October 17th, 2017. His new portrait features darker skin and different facial features. His wardrobe and beard shape remain the same. Pixelberry explained in a blog post that this change, like any that might be made to established characters, was made to make it clear that all characters in their stories are fictional and not based on specific individuals. They also stated that while other characters appearances may change, they will not alter the appearance of other love interests.
- Whilst your character is The Freshman (first year), James is a junior or possibly a senior. He is a senior, possibly a "fifth year" or "super senior" when your character becomes The Sophomore.
- It is unclear if he took an extra semester or if he is graduating early.
- In The Sophomore: Hartfeld Horror Story, he is renamed Jim and is portrayed as a much more stereotypical nerd.