Being one of Henry’s characters is, let’s say, interesting. First of all, he’s a man trying to write a woman’s perspective. He kept trying to get in touch with his feminine side and making wrong turns. I tried to help him understand but…well, you know men.
Finally, I got him to sit down one day and talk to me about where he saw my story line, or character arc, going. He didn’t have a clue. He envisioned me riding off into the sunset with Michael but had no idea how to get me there. He had the nerve to ask me what I wanted. Frustrated that after five drafts he still didn’t know, I stared him down and said, “Don’t you know? Haven’t you read the book?”
He’ll tell you that when I said that, the light clicked and he saw my desire for freedom and independence. What he won’t tell you is the light came on when I clocked him upside the head with James Scott Bell’s Plot and Structure. There’s more than one way to get knowledge of the craft into somebody’s head.
After that “interview,” as he calls it, we worked very well together. He accepted my direction in how I would talk and act, the difference between my business voice and my prostitute voice. He grasped the significance of why I squeeze my fingers.
And, working together, we explored the tension and conflict between my wanting to be free and my wanting to be loved. My attraction to Michael warred with my not wanting any man controlling me. Loving Michael meant giving up some of that control.
By the end of the book, I thought he’d finally done a decent job of capturing me on paper, given what I had to work with. I told him I’m willing to take the risk of being in his sequel, Riverbend Justice.
We’ll see how that turns out. Hopefully, he’ll behave himself.