I’m think I’m getting the hang of this, although I miss getting out for coffee, meeting friends for dinner, having the freedom to come and go as I please.
I do have my writing which is keeping me connected to “people” in another way. They might not be real, but the characters in my books are constantly talking to me, telling me who they are, what they like and what they dream about. I’ve just finished editing the draft for Magic Bean Cafe and it will be going to the formatter on Monday. I’m re-reading Once There Was A Tree to send to my editor mid-April and then it’s back to Tipping the Scales and re-working that for a May edit.
The biggest challenge coming up is attending to the last three books in the series. I need to have them sketched out, not only in my mind, but on paper. The thing about a series is that you have to weave in the characters as you go. All my goddesses have shown up on the page in book one. Simon and Ioan were introduced as well. They are the men that will sweep Minerva and Gwen away. Niall has made a couple of appearances and is next on the agenda, giving Lilith a run for her money. I’ve mentioned Tihomir, who will become more visible as time goes on. Dax has made his debut and he’s becoming fleshed out with each scene. I’ve been able to create couples with built in conflict to this point, but there are two men who are underdeveloped. I’m not even sure I know who they are yet.
Let me explain the process I’ll go through to find the answers. I’ll think about the goddess, what kind of life she’s lived, and who might be a good counterpoint. Then I’ll ask questions like what are her triggers, false beliefs, fears, what are the needs that have been compromised by her life experiences. Then try to figure out what kind of conflict will provide the her the best opportunity for growth.
Brigid spent most of her life in foster care. She survived the less-than-stellar experience by writing stories, fairy tales, with happily-ever-after endings. She wants a family, roots and permanence but for as much as she’s bonded with the few people she’s let get close, she’s unable to believe that good things will come to her. What if one of the boys who bullied her when she was younger returns to Eden? Conflict, yes. What if he’s an investigative reporter whose life is now focused on truth, and he has no time for fairy tales? Conflict, yes. Over the next few weeks, I will play with this and see if it works, looking to Gabriel Bresnahan for answers.
And how about Cerridwen? She was trapped underground during a archaeological dig, and thought she was going to die. She left the field and is now working as a forensic specialist, dealing with a different kind of dead. Should the man who caused the cave-in show up? Conflict, yes. Should she be assigned a case where the body was trapped in a similar way as she was, but died as a result. Or should the corpse be in a confined space, one she’s not willing to enter for fear she’ll be unable to breathe? Conflict, yes. Will someone on her team help her get through it or will it be the man who’s returned to haunt her? Will she fight him, believing he’s incompetent and can’t be trusted, or learn that he’s changed due to the accident and is now a better man? Ioan brings a Kurd to Eden and there’s a possibility it’s his brother that caused the collapse… this one is still a work in progress.
It’ll be interesting to see who emerges for Breet and Cerri. They’re strong and resilient and will need men who can appreciate who they are and what they bring to the world. It’s my job to make that happen.