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My Nameless New Friend

December 30, 2012

Have you ever been minding your own business, dragging the garbage to the curb, loading the dishwasher, folding the laundry, when, all of a sudden, the character you’ve been waiting to meet taps you on the shoulder?

BidI had such a moment. After auditioning all the existing characters for the lead role in the last book of my trilogy, I decided that none of them quite measured up. Their character arcs have closed. They’d said all they had to say and I was beginning to understand that I needed a new main character for the final story.

But that character had not made his entrance yet.

Today, as I was driving to the store, I caught a glimpse of a candidate for that spot in my mind’s eye. He was out hunting with his father, Rigel. He’s awfully young, not even twenty, but strong, like his dad. One word kept circling around him:


“Are you reckless?” I ask him as I ease into the slow lane to accommodate my distracted state of mind.

“Maybe.” His lips twitch and tease, and dare me to ask more.

“… Are you angry?”

“How would you feel if your mom could read your mind whenever she wanted to?”


“Good point,” I reply, then add, “You’re kind of a hotshot, aren’t you?”

He looks at me with mischievous eyes. “Kinda.”Image courtesy of Aleksandra P. @ stock.xchng

“That could get you into trouble.”


“I like you. Wanna be in my book?”

“Hell, yeah. When can we start?”

Soon, my nameless new friend, I think to myself. Only a few more holidays to go …

Happy New Year to all my blogging buddies! Have you met any new characters this year?

Images courtesy of  Marija Jure and Aleksandra P. @ stock.xchng
  1. December 30, 2012 6:43 pm

    Love this post! Hope your maybe-reckless hotshot gets a name soon. 🙂

    • December 30, 2012 10:49 pm

      Sometimes names don’t come until they’re good and ready! For now I’m going with the letter ‘T’ 😉
      Happy New Year, Melissa!

  2. December 30, 2012 6:56 pm

    Ha, are you reckless? That’s great. I hope you have fun with your nameless new friend.

    • December 30, 2012 10:52 pm

      Thanks, Rena. I’m pretty sure I will!
      And I think, when it comes to my first drafts, I’m quite a reckless writer …

  3. December 30, 2012 7:14 pm

    Very cool. That’s neat that your characters talk to you. Mine don’t. I wonder why. Happy new year to you too!

    • December 30, 2012 10:57 pm

      I’m a firm believer that every writer writes differently. I’ll bet the same writer even writes each book differently!
      So your characters might be communicating with you in other ways.
      One thing that makes my characters easier to ‘hear’ though is writing something every day, no matter how insignificant it might seem. That seems to keeps the lines open. If I’m not writing at all, the characters usually go silent after a while.

      • December 31, 2012 11:03 am

        I’m starting to wonder if my characters don’t talk to me simply because I know too much about them. 😉

  4. December 30, 2012 7:44 pm

    Not yet, but looking for one. As I go into Revision I keep thinking I need a character that can bring the story together like Gandalf in Lord of the Rings. One that crosses all the story lines somehow. It might be one of my existing characters that decides they want to take on a greater role than I had originally planned for them OR if there is a new character out there that just hasn’t shown themselves and wants to be thrown into the guts of my book.

    There was one character who has hinted that they want to be in Book Two of my series. The Ice Queen. And also a young Giant. We’ve just begun to talk, so will have to see where it goes.

    • December 30, 2012 10:59 pm

      That’s interesting, Papabear!
      I can think of quite of few of your characters that would qualify in that capacity. It will be fun to see which one of them gets promoted!

  5. December 30, 2012 8:26 pm

    Yes, yes! I have met a new character this year. (Don’t you love it when that happens?) He appeared from nowhere at the end of my first novel, did a quick walk on, and now I find I can’t shake him – nor do I want to! He’s older, experienced, and enigmatic. In my next novel he’s going to teach my younger characters a thing or two about war, life, and loyalty!

    Happy New Year and thanks for your wonderful blog.

    • December 30, 2012 11:03 pm

      You are so welcome, Nancy!
      Yes, I love it when that happens. 😀 Your new character sounds like someone who can carry a whole novel–someone I would really enjoy reading.

  6. December 31, 2012 12:43 am

    What a great post! He sounds interesting and I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun with him. Happy New Year and here’s to writing time with T.

    • January 1, 2013 7:14 pm

      Thanks, Rebecca! If only the holidays would let up so I can get to this story. 🙂

  7. December 31, 2012 2:13 am

    That NEVER happens to me *pouts* lol 😉

    I’m so jealous!

    Happy New Year honey!


    • January 1, 2013 7:16 pm

      Keep writing, Vikki! You never know when the Muse will tap you on the shoulder …

      Happy New Year, too. 🙂

  8. December 31, 2012 4:45 am

    Love this post! My characters are more like scratchcards, revealling themselves more and more as I scratch at the surface. I’ve just set myself a major challenge for 2013 (to post a bit from my new novel on my blog every day – I’m already regretting it and the year hasn’t started) and I’m just scratching away to reveal my new character. She seems a bit of a cow so far… 😉
    Happy New Year!

    • January 1, 2013 7:18 pm

      I’m so excited to read about Claire! She does seem to have the makings of a spoiled aristocrat, for now–but that will make it all the more interesting when she finds herself in a youth hostel, won’t it?
      I’m so impressed with your ambitious challenge!

  9. December 31, 2012 8:01 am

    Awesome. I hope I am lucky enough to meet up with a reckless young character this year. Your conversation was great. Happy 2013.

    • January 1, 2013 7:20 pm

      Thanks, Shell. 🙂
      I never know when these things will happen, I swear … but they usually happen when I am in no position to write them down!
      Happy New Year!

  10. December 31, 2012 11:27 am

    I love the convo with your new character, lol! Mine just kind of come to me as I write. Happy NYE!!! P.S. YOu were in my stats as one of my top 5 commentors for 2012–thanks for alll your support and I hope you keep coming back~cheers:-)

    • January 1, 2013 7:21 pm

      Your blog is always a lot of fun to visit, so I think you’ll continue to see a lot of me!
      Happy New Year, Jamie!

  11. December 31, 2012 5:43 pm

    I’ve met two actually. I’ve had an idea for a story which grew into a book (or perhaps a collection of interrelated short stories) once I met the two secondary characters who will drive the action for the main character and the apple of his eye. A high school princess and a misanthrope, respectively.

    • January 1, 2013 7:23 pm

      Heh. 🙂 Sounds like a fun crowd!
      It seems once characters start to come alive they don’t stop following me around. Kind of like zombies …
      Happy New Year!

  12. December 31, 2012 7:13 pm

    Love this! 🙂

    • January 1, 2013 7:23 pm

      Thanks, Rabia!
      And happy writing in 2013 🙂

  13. January 1, 2013 4:11 am

    I got tingles reading this. I love when that little voice that enters your thoughts and the moment you realise it has something to do with your story! I haven’t met a character in a while, but a few weeks ago the hairs on the back of my next tingled and this weird whisper entered my mind – ‘Pandora’s Box.’ Hopefully 2013 will bring more of those moments!

    • January 1, 2013 7:25 pm

      That’s exactly it–that little voice. Once I learned to listen for it, stories started to come together so much better. Pandora’s Box could be all kinds of trouble!

  14. Prue permalink
    January 1, 2013 6:12 pm

    He sounds so very interesting! And a tease!

    No new characters for me but I’m hoping to touch base with some old characters from 2011 – the Green Ribbon ones – the vet and his dog, the city girl and the creep 😀
    Had an idea for a new short story too, verging on the paranormal. Bit unusual for me!
    Time to get Holly’s HTTS course notes out …

    Happy New Year Kirsten. Hope it brings lots of words and lots of fun! 🙂

    • January 1, 2013 7:29 pm

      Yay, paranormal!
      It’s so great to see you back writing again! The Green Ribbon sounds like a wonderful story.
      In case you’re interested, there’s a Write a Book with Me thread (a couple of them actually, pick any of them!) in the Holly Lisle forums, where we have been chugging along for about a year now. Feel free to jump in!
      I hope 2013 brings you all kinds of good things, and that your writing flourishes and brings you lots of joy. 🙂

  15. Prue permalink
    January 2, 2013 5:38 am

    Thanks Kirsten. I feel in the need of some sort of ‘writing oil’ to oil the wheels of my brain. I do hope I can knock The Green Ribbon into shape because I love the characters 🙂

    Thanks too for the memory jog about WABWM on Holly’s forums.

  16. January 3, 2013 6:09 am

    Happy New Year to you too!

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