You may have noticed a slowdown in Life on the Periphery posts. Partly because it’s summer, and partly because I’ve been writing. Not poetry this time, but a new fantasy novel. Newer than my other new one. I got an idea and it just grew and grew until I had to start writing it down. I’ve been working on it for a couple weeks, writing in great bursts. Much of the writing is getting to know my main characters. I had a clear idea of my protagonist, so I started shoving her into little scenarios to see how she’d react.
Of course the novel started out linear, here’s the inciting incident, here’s what happened right after, etc. Then it all turned left, another character demanded his time on stage. We’ll call him Character A for Annoying. He bulled his way into my book. So protagonist and I set out to test him, to see if he was worthy. I chased him down alleyways with a rifle, then a wolf, exploded magic at him from all sides, had the bad guys thunk on him, let the protagonist take some cheap shots. Character A has passed the test so far, although he’s looking a bit rough around the edges.
Character B was a whole ‘nother kettle of anchovies. She is aggravating in that ‘don’t tell the protagonist anything important’ sort of way. She revels in letting the protagonist flail about and figure it out herself. Which is good, in a way. No one likes easy answers. Yeah, I’m lying, everyone likes easy answers. But character torture is in the job description.
The bad guys kind of fell into place after I figured out what my protagonist was doing running around the wilderness away from her hometown. What’s a girl to do when bad guys come to drag her back to the city? Why level up, of course. Secure some weapons, invoke some magic, and conjure some great scary creature to stand by her side. Let Character A join the fun, as long as he doesn’t cramp her style. Time to save the world. Or at least, her little part of it.