The author in “writing mode” creates characters, situations and sometimes even whole worlds — when those creations seem to become real, so real that they won’t fade away without a struggle, it is an accomplishment worth celebrating.
I’ve known that joy and in some cases the characters were so persistent that even though I had already typed “The End” there was so much more to say.
The first time this happened to me was after I finished the story His Lucky Charm (by the way the original title was “Forgotten”). The story centered around Caitlyn and Brandon, their love affair, a wee bit of espionage, and their battle to get back to each other despite the dangers. There were a few supporting characters, aunt-&-uncle/step-parents Sylvia and Walter. This whole cast of characters continued in a sequel, Within the Law.
Tom Hughes fulfilled the big brother role for Caitlyn’s angst about Brandon, he was wise and supportive. At one point Brandon voices his surprise to Caitlyn that despite Tom’s strong family values he was going through life alone. That was the moment Caitlyn let Brandon know about Tom’s tragic past when his high-school girlfriend and fiancé was murdered and Tom had to say good-bye. I really liked Tom and I couldn’t help it, I actually worried about him. (Writers can be a strange breed, our imaginary friends become very real to us.) Tom deserved his own Happily-Ever-After.
And thus began Within the Law…
“Tom gave up on ever falling in love again the day that he buried his high school sweetheart and fiancé. He started a career in law enforcement just so that he could find her murderer and rapist.
Just when he is about to see justice done, he meets Alli Davis-the defense attorney for the murdering rapist who took his love from him.
Alli and Tom share a mutual and passionate attraction but Alli refuses to make any commitments. She is hiding a huge secret. Tom falls in love with her and pursues her despite a false arrest, kidnapping and attempt on his life.”
A similar story of persistence occurred after I finished Final Sin. The heroine of the story, Julie, was a paramedic, her paramedic partner Matt had decided he needed to move on career wise by the end of the book, He also had gotten married by the end of the book although we never met his wife. My story Hyphema focuses on Matt and his wife Sudah as they settle in at their new home and Matt’s new Job.
“Matt Garratti, a paramedic from New York, moves his wife and son to North Carolina to work at his dream job as a flight medic. Pakistani born Sudah, his wife, receives frosty stares and insensitive comments from their new neighbors.
Before long, Matt wonders if he is pursuing his dream or bringing his family into a nightmare from which they may never wake.”
Things were slightly different when I wrote Karma Visited and its sequel Annie’s Karma, both books focused on the same couple, Annie and Dave, and was truly a continuation of their journey. This was an interesting experience for me because I really got to see my characters’ growth in their circumstances and in their relationship with each other.
“Annie Furman moves on from her past and into her future with Undersheriff Dave Turner. Her gifts – or are they her curse? – grow stronger, and she finds out that she is not alone in the realm of astral travel. Dave saved her life, now she has to fight another ‘traveler’ to save Dave… if she survives.”
How about you? Have you ever read a story and wondered what happened in the future with one of your favorite characters?