The part of creating a draft is seeing how my views about characters can change before I’ve even got to the end. Original purposes can easily be drowned out by subtle detail changes and before I know it, characters who were just marginal and only there to help create a scene take on lives and full personalities of their own and then I’ve got to go and make changes to the rest of the story
Case in point when I consider Tabitha, Semaj (now Carver), Desirae (who’ll need to be renamed) and Damen’s art teacher Mr. Brannon. In the original heavy notes, only Tabitha existed and now I’m considering dropping her altogether as these others come further into the light. Semaj is named after a Sim-baby and I had no specific purpose in mind for him other than creating some doubt for Damen, but I’m wondering if it’s worth it develop him further now that I’ve included him in another class with Damen. Desirae was only given a name at all because I wanted to demonstrate that there were black kids in Damen’s class and that the kids were lined in alphabetical order, but now she’s appeared in so many other places and goes to show much of Brit’s angst with being a black in a suburban community that I can’t imagine ever trying to extricate her from the project. Mr. Brannon, in just the last few days, has taken on an amazing personality that I wish develop to the point that I’m willing to drop some of the drama that lies ahead in the story just to fit in everything about him.
I know I’ve heard somewhere that it’s the characters that chose the writer and, if I’ve seen anything in writing Damen, I know for certain that’s true. It makes me sad, however, when I consider all the brain cells I killed in drinking in college and all the characters that went with them. All the voices that won’t be heard because of my decisions in my early twenties…
I wrote 605 words today (grinned wider as he left the room) and I know I’m going to struggle to get there, but I’m really going to push to make the jump to a thousand words a day for the month of September. If I don’t hit my birthday goal, I can always bring the goal back down to a healthy 3-500, but at least I can look back on this year and know I did everything I could to get this novel done.