When I was eleven I wrote this story about a brother and sister living in a London orphanage with a mom who was a…well, she had a less than reputable past. They were shunned, stuck in the basement all night and it was sad and pitiable and I thought I was a very fine writer indeed. They eventually got this friend who was sent down to live with them, called Sebastian (I’ve always had a thing for that name, saw what you will) who contracted a fever and in a *very* touching scene…died. It was the first time I ever cried while writing something (not that it happens often now, mind you) and I was seriously impressed with my own skill. (The other day I reread “Beth and Oliver” as it was temporarily entitled and was verging on appalled at my own arrogance- it was cute and mildly sad but nothing to shed a tear over.)
All that to tell you that I get kinnnnddd of caught up in my characters– again, it’s probably some form of pride, but I think every writer does it. I also hate them sometimes. (I once finished a story because although I had run out of inspiration and hated it, I felt I owed my heroine an ending since I’d bestowed on her an abusive father- I didn’t want her to have to live with that life, even on paper. Yeah….)
But funny thing: because I knew from the start that Roman was going to be the “second guy”– the one Will Scarlet, the St. John Rivers, the Nick Carraway- I wrote him with very little real love in my heart for him. I never gave him a chance. I realize, as I reread and edit, how unfair I was. In the brief moments that I did give him that chance (chapter 46 is my favorite part of his, now that I reread it) he’s actually kind of adorable at times.
And now…. *puts on River Song accent* Spoilers!
As I do this rewrite, I’m taking the advice of some of my readers and fleshing Roman out a little more- he’ll still be the same person, but now he’s got a past, or at least his family does. So, a couple of things:
He had a brother and sister.
His brother and sister were killed before he was old enough to remember them.
Hence Natalia is depressed and Nicolai is furious- guess who killed his kids? Not gonna say, sorry. It’s all coming soon. But he has a motive other than justice for revenge and there’s always been a lot of pressure on Roman.
His eventual craziness is going to be more believable and a little less…crazy. More just infuriated / a little out of it / jealous. At least I hope so. I’ve got my fingers crossed that my writing talent will improve by the time I get to those scenes.
I’m so excited! I’ve found Jakob’s place in the book, his role, his story, his relationship with Evy, his entrance and exit points– and I think I’ve got down what he looks like…..Voila!
Daniel Craig…but with reddish-brown hair. I’ve thought he’d make a good assassin / tough-guy character after being awed by his performances in Road to Perdition and especially Defiance. 🙂 Cool guy.
I’m reworking her a bit too, but she’s going to be in it less than Bekah. I basically picture her like a slightly less gorgeous Natalie Portman (nothing to do with the similar names). 🙂