Saturday, March 29, 2008

Character growth in reaction to a plot need? Huh--?

...I've been doing a lot of thinking about Connor--he's my hero. I like heroes, and for some reason my books seem to focus on the hero (at least in my mind). When I was writing Hot Contract I spent so much time in Keegan's head, I started to worry maybe Jen wasn't as fully fleshed as I'd hoped. But I've gotten two reviews and each review said, "she's surprisingly strong". Funny how I didn't see that.

Cowboy says it's just the way I write. Where I see average-normal reactions, other people see strength. Maybe something is skewed in my perceptions. I dunno.

Every time Jen would hit a snag, I'd do the Joan-Wilder. You know--where Jack turns to Joan, and there's a bad guy (or he LOOKS like a bad guy) pointing a gun at them, and says, "Write us out of this one, Joan Wilder." And then the real story starts because everything gets faster and more complicated, but Joan's there--doing the logical next-thing to get herself out of danger.

I created Jacey as someone else--she's always "been" Jacey, but she was part of Intel--someone I thought Fallon would like and talk to. Awhile back, RD had this challenge thread, where CC and Sienna would find victims and force them to write in response to a set scenario. I liked winning, because I used the leverage to get other people through writer's block, and it was fun going someplace strange in my head.

Someone--can't remember who--asked me to set my hero and heroine in Vegas, have them wake up in a motel room with the hero naked--yeah, like Tris (at that point Tris was my hero) would ever get naked. He's so repressed, I think I'm going to have a hard time getting his pants off (and lol--didn't THAT sound wrong...) So I had Rafe come out of the bathroom naked--Amy wake up, see him, and Jacey come out after Rafe. Which lays out my thoughts on everyone's role in Kill Velocity.

When I started Dead Gorgeous Jacey just sort of appeared, and since then--she's changed. Not because of anything I've done--but for Connor to be a certain way--Jacey has to be a certain way.

...things I've discovered about Jacey Chang I didn't know.

1) Her mom isn't dead--just missing. And I have no idea where to go with it.
2) Tris found Jacey and rescued her. Busted out the window and everything.
3) Jacey is a member of Tris's elite internal intelligence unit and not governed by normal StallingCo rules.
4) She doesn't like sex
5)...and while she knows she's messed up--she's moved past it. In other words, she's in denial and feeling good about it.

I's not that she changes as I "grow" Connor. She deepens. There's a stone I like called moss agate. You can't see through it, and there are formations in the matrix that look like moss (moss agate, lol?) but in it's own way, it's beautiful. Every time you pick it up, there's something new--but the stone itself doesn't change.

I don't think I have to worry about Jacey. I think she's doing fine.


Alice Audrey said...

I love moss agate, almost as much as I like amber.

Jacey sounds like a lot of fun to work with.

Unhinged said...

Romancing The Stone was my favorite movie for a long time. I loved it, I loved it. I still love it.

You wrote: Where I see average-normal reactions, other people see strength.

Each person is going to see something different in your characters, based on each person's own perceptions. Which I think you know already, but FWIW.

I think Jen as both strong and vulnerable, depending on the situation. But at this point, more vulnerable. I'm only up to Chapter 5, though. :)

Interesting characters (and a lot of funny narrative) so far.

Gwen Hayes said...

It was me that set you up in Vegas, btw. :) Those were fun threads on RD.

Alice Audrey said...

Jen is the mouse that roars. She has such overwhelming phobias that you expect her to be weak, then she turns around and bites someone and proves she's no push over. Because she's no Hillary Clinton, it's bound to catch some people by surprise.

Andi, wait until you get to the scenes on the lava fields. Hubba hubba!

vicky said...
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