So, I was thinking tonight about the line on which I decided to stop writing and about what, if anything, it says about the character who spoke it.
I’ve often found that the longer I write a character, the more they appear to take shape, not from my own previous notes about them, but from the way their dialogue flows and how they react to every other person around them. Rolling this line over and over in my head, I like to think that it portrays Grandpa Jack as accommodating and good-natured, but even as I read his whole line of thought to myself, I realize it says far more about him.
Grandpa Jack pursed his lips, but nodded. “Well, I guess it’s only fair. I know Jackie’s probably out there with new flowers at least once a month and I don’t know if you’ve ever even been since…Well, yeah. I’ll just have to run it by your grandma. Make sure we stop over at the flower shop before…Yeah, that’ll be fine.”
If there’s one thing I’ve realized while writing about Damen’s family, it’s that the death of his father has not only had a jarring effect on the family, but continues to be the source for simply heart-wrenching agony in a group of people who have some trouble releasing emotions without the boost of some device whether it is alcohol, anger or art. Grandpa Jack is in a lot of pain and while I think that he thinks he’s just being a loving and helpful grandfather, all that pain scratches through the surface when one least expects it.
I wrote 348 words tonight (Yeah, that’ll be fine.”) and wrote early since I could sense a case of the “I don’t wannas” coming. What’s interesting though, is that I can still be surprised by my own characters as I’m writing them. Somehow, that just seems backwards.