Friday, April 13, 2012

A Surprise in the Story

Got back to work on Scurvy Dogs! and Wednesday was a good day, 1,490 words by noon. Good thing too, because work kept me busy Thursday. I'll be back at work on the story this morning, and am reading a couple of chapters to the kids this afternoon.

Not only was Wednesday productive, but some cool things happened in the story, including something I didn't expect at all. A character I had always assumed was something of a milquetoast, a dandy, just proved that he must be a whole lot more under the surface. That's always cool, because you like to see characters prove themselves to be more than they seemed. As long as it can be done without sacrificing the integrity of the story, and this can. It'll require very little adjusting, but this will work very well.

It's just odd, because I never saw it coming. I literally I had no idea that the tutor would end up as some kind of pirate. That was never the role I'd planned for him. But I suddenly realized that for the situation I had laid out to have happened, he MUST have been pretending all along. Now I'll have to go back and see if he gave me any clues that that's who he really is.

The best part, of course, is that if the author never saw it coming, odds are the reader won't either. Although I have always suspected that the readers are a lot smarter than I am.

I'm also reminded of the actor's maxim - If you'rew supposed to play the devil, find the angel in him. If you're playing an angel, find the devil in him. In other words, one-dimensional characters are boring. And most people aren't like that, all good or all evil. What makes us interesting is our quirks and inconsistencies. So having a foppish character suddenly turn into something else is great, even though he isn't a major character.

At least, he's not yet. But he may be one of those fictional characters who keeps forcing his way into a more and more pivotal part in the story. Can't wait to see how it plays out.

UPDATE: Just finished the chapter, 1,290 words today. Off to read.

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