After a sun-baked summer, it’s time I remember I have a blog. The construction crew has moved on to greener pastures, and my home and my desk are my own, once again. At the time of renovation it felt like I had roommates, that we would be in each others lives almost indefinitely. Now that they’ve cleared out, I am having trouble remember their names. (I hope my children are reading this, because, you just never know…you know?)
It’s funny how people can come and go in your life. Some pass through like a morning fog, burning off any memory by midday. Others, for whatever reason, hang on like a bad habit. You see, that pretzel and beer at noon tradition? That’s just Uncle Theo reminding me to not forget him. Or drinking out of the milk carton when I hope no one is watching? Yes, that is my fun electrician, Jake, with the bushy red eyebrows, reminding me about the time I caught him doing just that in my house during renovation. Who could forget him?
We writers hope that the characters in our stories are of the latter, a bad habit you just can’t shake…hanging on reminding you how they solved problems, how they persevered against the odds, how they got their Aunt Margaret to sell her soul for a Devil Dog and how they escaped sure ruin by choosing to marry the hedge fund owners daughter instead of the prostitute from adjoining cell. We writers hope that our characters hang on to your conscious mind as well as your subconscious, coming back to you when you least expect it, when you go to grab a swig of milk, for example.
I am just about ready to let go of a story (and the characters in it) that I have spent way too much time ruminating on. My characters are clinging to all states of consciousness. I won’t be letting them fully go anytime soon. I suppose all habits aren’t bad.
What characters stand out in your mind?