It is 6:00 this morning and I am up sipping my coffee with thoughts of Kallan running through my head.
Since January, my head has been fogged with the issues as seen in “Broken.” What time I used to lay awake until midnight and wake at 5 in the morning thinking of plot twists and story lines was consumed by ever-growing thoughts completely unrelated to writing.
I’ve had to force myself to stay on track and buckle down and, at the launch of my first book, this was not the easiest challenge. It could not come at a more grueling time with edits, revisions, and book releases. My memory proved to be gone and my distorted perception had me second guessing everything around me.
This morning I woke at 5 o’clock and thoughts of my dear sweet Kallan came to mind. Her scaling the wall of the castle wall in a desperate attempt to escape an eager would-be-lover filled my imagination and I thought, “It’s Kallan. Wouldn’t she just blast him with her fire?” I then launched a two-sided argument with myself.
“She would if she was threatened.”
“But he isn’t a threat. He’s just…eager.”
“So she’d punch him in the nose.”
“This is a woman with such a dedication to her goal that she has never bothered with relationships. We’re talking zero experience here.”
“But she’s a queen. A grown woman with nerves of steel.”
“In enemy territory. Punching him in the nose could launch a war…well, fuel the already existing war.”
“She would go out the window.”
(By the way, that…is how a writer writes).
I have to tell you about Kallan.
First, for the first time since January 22 something other than ravens and crows has filled my mind. Before I was a writer I often wondered, “How do you know when you are a writer?” No one hires the writer and says, “As of April 30th you are a writer! Welcome to the company.”
I think, you are a writer when you wake at 5 AM to logicize your characters out of foiled plot twists.
Logicize (verb): to use logic. It’s a crap word I made up and often use.
Kallan. I do so adore my dearest Kallan. You’ve heard a lot about Bergen, but, to tell you the truth, Bergen bores me of late. THAT’S RIGHT YOU POMPOUS OVERBEARING NORD LORD!
Kallan throws fire. I mean she collects her Seidr (magic) compresses the energy like a compacted atom bomb then fires it at someone…usually my other protagonist, Rune (Bergen’s older brother by like…1 minute)
But creating Kallan was one of the hardest things to do…mostly, because of her psychological profile. I can never just create a character and give them random problems. I have to have reason, explanation, and a diagnosis. So here is Kallan.
Kallan has never learned to grieve because her memories were tampered with and magically suppressed when she was a child. In addition, the loss of her mother traumatized her and she developed a desperate need to become stronger. Kallan’s feeling of gross incompetence boosted her need to overcompensate for her failure to save her mother.
Her greatest weakness is accepting the fact that she has a weakness which is she can not stop death. When her father dies, Kallan fails to save him. This reinforces her issue. Again, Kallan fails to save a little boy who dies in her arms.
Even when Kallan finds peace and accepts her grief, she still can not accept her failures. Kallan eventually grows so desperate to stop death that she…well, I can’t say much more, but you’ll see.