Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Author as Therapist

I just turned in HOME FOR CHRISTMAS to my editor at SuperRomance and I'm feeling delighted! And nostalgic. I miss these characters and their struggle.
I miss Starlight Desert Mall, which is the setting for the book, the place that Sylvie had turned into a home. I've grown to love it, too, especially the island of plants in the center where my characters, um, got to know each other, um, better.

This is my first SuperRomance and I so want it to be fabulous!
It took me the longest time to wrangle Chase and Sylvie into shape. Actually, what I was wrangling was my own understanding of them--what they really wanted, why they'd hidden their true desires from themselves for so long.
It's hard to write about people who are different than you are. I'm pretty much out there with my feelings, but these two played their cards close to their vests and it took some time to convince them to spill to me, the author of their story.

I hope that doesn't sound too woo-woo. Sometimes being an author feels a lot like being a therapist, only you choose your "patients," they don't choose you. (Or maybe they that's woo-woo.)
Anyhoo, you invite the characters onto your couch and ask them questions about their past, their parents, their goals and dreams, help them discover self-defeating behaviors and overcome them.

But, better than therapy, where the psychologist sends the client off with insights and tools to work it out for themselves, as an author I'm charged with doing the fixing. It's an honor and a responsibility. I hope I did Chase and Sylvie justice.

I hope you agree when you read the book, coming next November.