With Buffy being over and my uncertainty about next year’s Angel being at “If I think about it, I may go mental” proportions, I am going to start talking about other things in this here blog.
Like my novel. I really wanted to be farther along in this thing than I am right now. Would have been nice to have it near the publication stage before everyone at ATPo went scampering off to their lives and I could use my built-in audience to sell a piece of fiction that has absolutely nothing to do with the supernatural, the Buffyverse, or philosophy.
But *alas* I am in the editing stage, and I don’t see being out of the editing stage even by the end of this calendar year. The big hold-up in getting done, I suppose, was the website. But enough about that thing.
My novel. My novel is about a 25-year-old graduate student named Valerie. It’s a character-driven, not plot-driven novel, so summing up the story is very difficult. Suffice it to say, it’s about a woman who is emotionally screwed up and how she begins to learn not to be. This is a big theme with me, for reasons I don’t really understand (being pretty emotionally level myself). Nevetheless, my fascination with this theme explains why I love the character of Faith and why I am biting my tongue for the foreseeable future lest I blast Mutant Enemy for wiping Connor’s slate clean.
Enough of the Buffyverse stuff. So Valerie, right. Valerie I have lived with in my head and on the page for ten years now. She was once upon a time just another character in an assemblage of characters, and then she took over the story, as some characters will do. She is so many things that I am not–emotionally screwed-up, parental-issues having, outgoing and obnoxious and flirtatious and promiscuous. She’s cool and worldly and did every drug imaginable when she was a teen.
They say, “write what you know”. Well, all I really know about her I learned from other people. She is not me. She is a certain type of woman that I have met more than once in my life. Bold, brazen, intelligent and beautiful and so absolutely insecure and fucked-up at the same time.
When the novel opens, she has made something of her life. Her adolescent past has passed and she is in graduate school and doing pretty well. But she carries around the emotional baggage of the past, and it gets reflected in her every interaction. Her foil/antagonist is her graduate school advisor, Elizabeth, a woman whose controlling tendencies rival only those of Valerie’s own mother, and the result is, well, governed by a little-known theory of physics that says that “for every attempt to control Valerie, there is an equal and opposite attempt by Valerie to get out of control.”
Starting with Elizabeth’s cute, sheltered, and hormonal teenaged daughter.
Up, down, turn-around,
please don’t let me hit the ground
Tonight I think I’ll walk alone
I’ll find my soul as I go home.
–New Order “Temptation”