Please welcome Starla Kay back to the blog. She has a treat in store for us as she shares a few of the times her characters have surprised her. I’ve read all of the books she’s mentioned and have enjoyed each of these surprises…always wondering whether the surprise was something she planned or whether it was something her characters sprung on her. It’s nice to have answers. I’m giving away winner’s choice of an ebook copy of winner’s choice of one of the books Starla mentions below. Leave a comment to enter.
As a reader, I love little twists in a story when a character surprises me. Of course, the surprise needs to fit in with his/her characterization and the overall story.
As a writer, I also enjoy when my characters do something unexpected. It is part of why I don’t like to thoroughly outline a story. If I do that before I start writing, I’m generally bored with the story already…because I know what is going to happen and when.
I’ve been surprised many times by my characters, usually by the women. Here are a few examples:
In Holly’s Big Bad Santa, I knew Jared was returning to his hometown and wary about seeing Holly again. She, however, had no doubts about her feelings upon first seeing him again. She threw a snowball at his windshield. I didn’t expect that, but I was all for it when I thought about it after typing the action into the story line.
In Their Lady Gloriana, Gloriana turned out to be quite a curious young woman, especially when it came to knowing that her new husband, Thomas, and his first knight, Rowan, had been and still were lovers. Rather than being horrified or upset about the situation, she was always trying to understand more. And her nurturing nature surprised me and definitely Thomas in one particular situation. He came home sore from being ridden hard by Rowan and she wanted to soothe his pain. She was very serious about wanting to apply one of her healing salves. He was mortified about her wanting to soothe his ass that way. And Rowan was greatly amused when Thomas admitted this all to him the next morning.
In Snowed in with Her Cowboy from the anthology Cowboys in Charge, Kelly finally realized how badly she wanted to save her troubled marriage. I knew she would give him a special Christmas gift, but I didn’t expect it to be a riding crop with a heart-shaped top. He’s shocked, naturally, but she swears it isn’t really for discipline. The salesclerk had told her it was to be used by him to deliver a ‘sweet surprise’ when she’d been very, very good.
I could go on and on with my characters surprising me. If you are a writer, do your characters surprise you as well from time to time? As a reader, do you like when a character does something unexpected?
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