The Beast has finally been named. This morning I just felt in a naming kind of mood and turned my attention to my main Work in Progress.
Quite a few names occurred to me, but they didn’t seem to fit. So… I thought about recurring themes or objects in my story. And there it was. The name makes perfect sense. Doorways.
Except for the fact that doors in a literal sense appear often in my writing (no, I mean differently from going into rooms), doors also have a special significance to me.
These past few years have been all about doors opening on opportunities and closing on my past and wrong directions. There are many doors opening to me and I feel somewhat lost as to which choice to make.
It’s exactly the same with my characters. They are all very different, but they have doorways (making choices) in common.
James has to decide if he will step up. Ward must decide if he will tell the truth. Darrion must choose between loyalty and ambition. Gawain must choose sides. Callan must decide who she wants to become.
Everyone has an important decision. And every decision has an impact on others.
As you might notice from my short summery of the characters, there’s a lot of story to get down – with a lot of voices.
So I decided to take Bish Denham’s advice and hold interviews with each character. And immediately ran into a challenge.
I started last night at 22:00. Darrion insisted on being first – despite my wanting to start with Ward. What can I say? The fiend is stubborn.
You’d think that he’d be chatty. You’d be wrong. Getting information from him is like pulling teeth.
Think I’m kidding?
Me: Tell me about your childhood.
Me: Come on. I need to know.
Him: Did I stutter?
More to and fro arguing and negotiating followed and I gave up without knowing anything. And so it goes on. I’m currently taking a break before I decide to write him a terrible death at the end.
I can’t start an interview with anyone else, because his lordship won’t move his butt out of my mind. So here I am, letting him stew while I entertain myself with other things. Maybe he’ll be more talkative later…
Doubtful. Highly doubtful.
Sigh. I guess it sounds nuts, but I find it quite insightful, since I’m getting to know him outside of the context of the story. Even his reticence gives me insight into who he is, but he’ll never hear it from me…
How do you get to know your characters? Have anyone ever tried to get to know a character, only to have him/her push you back with every effort you make?