We were granted a reprieve. I’ve received several questions since last month and Ask an Author will remain a feature for the next couple of months. Of course, that does not mean I am done asking you to submit new queries.
Seems asking several authors the same question’s becoming a thing. I kinda like it, since it allows us to explore different outlooks. Here’s this month’s question, and for the record, it does not matter if it has been asked before. Authors are listed in alphabetical order.
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I have a question if this has not been asked before. It’s a 2-part question.
#1 - What GA story character (not your own) did you read that you said “damn I wish I had written that character” and why?
#2 - Now that you have chosen this character which of YOUR stories would you put him in and Why?
For example I like yours Carlos - CJ in Singer, and I think he would be a great add to Wayne’s Camp Refuge.
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The timing of these questions is spot on, as I’m actually doing this. One of my editors, @Backwoods Boy has a story here on GA that he wrote called Indian Summer. I’ve always had a connection to Native Americans, both by blood and relationships, so when this modern fantasy came out, I loved it from the start. Then I started talking to BB in private messages and ended up helping him with the story. The two principle characters, Pahana and Tocho are among my favorites, and it goes beyond what is posted, but also what I’ve discussed with BB when giving feedback as a beta reader.
So, I’m writing a story now, called Freedom Station, which is about twin young men, and what they are going through in their lives. In a later chapter, they are meeting Pahana and Tocho who are in their late 20’s at the time. It’s been a fun addition to my story to have BB loan me these two and allowed me to use them in my story.
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Although I can’t recall any specific character making me wish I had created it, there have been several I liked so much I’ve already included them in my stories.
The first one was Tyson Hill. Ty was the protagonist of Marc MacNally’s Love on the Rocks. An Aussie performer, I had two of my main characters attend a concert of his in Sydney. That was in Winter, but I referenced him a couple of other times in subsequent CJ Series stories. Since I have the author’s permission to use his character, Ty could show up again in the future.
Michael Quintana and Blaine Emerson, minor characters in @Parker Owens’ Predator Prey, have made multiple appearances in my stories. The most recent one was in Singer. The similarities between Parker’s Michael and my CJ were too tempting to avoid. Gay Hispanic teens with two fathers and non-Latin boyfriends was good; the fact Michael and Blaine attended the University of Miami clinched the deal. Chipper, Singer’s protagonist was also a student there. Michael and Blaine have made at least three appearances in my work.
@Dayne Mora’s Cory and Efrain became favorites when I read Wolf Like Me. Since the author abandoned them (please bring them back, Dayne) I asked for permission to use them. They are football players at Virginia Tech University, and the school conveniently scheduled a football game against the University of Miami in November 2018, I crafted a chapter in Goodnight, My Angel around it. I had some of my characters and Parker’s Michael and Blaine travel to Blacksburg from Miami and Washington for the contest. Their interaction with my CJ was through the mail. However, I left the possibility of further encounters open.
As for the future, I’ve toyed with using more than one of @Jack Scribe’s characters. Private Investigator Oleg Petrov, a partner in AOI’s West Coast security operation was a consideration for Singer in place of the FBI agent I created. I also considered using his Brent Williams as the LA attorney in the same story. I could still do so in an upcoming one, but since Jack passed away a couple of years ago, I’d have to do it without the author’s permission. If you’re interested in finding out more about Oleg and Brent, check out Scribe’s Splash Trilogy. If you like my work, you’ll love his.
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This is a tough set of questions, mainly because I can't always remember where a character I liked appeared. Second because you want me to pick just one.
1. I'm gonna cheat a bit on what character--I'm picking a duo--a pair of brothers who you really can't separate. I choose Alex and his little brother Luke from @Dodger's 'The Cockney Canuck'. Why? These two have had a crappy life and just want to be together and somewhat safe, but Fate is always against them. Alex has trouble dealing with life due to his abusive family issues, and Luke just wants to stay with his brother, the only stable person in his life.
2. What story of mine would I put them in? If you mean one I wrote rather than someone else's in the example cited, then I'd put Alex and Luke in my 'Jay & Miles' story. It has an atmosphere and an environment that puts one's emotional well-being first rather than conforming to society's expectations. And, the characters help one another develop their own better vision of themselves and of their place in an accepting and caring group.
Hope this helps you out. I did have a fun alternative, but you only wanted one...but I'll tell you about it anyway. I'd choose Difris, the alien robot created by @Geron Kees as his Portal station guardian. I'd put him in my 'Tales of Three Worlds' story because nothing goes better together than a robot and Neanderthals in a bizarre future history.
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I love Clay Moore, Little Man, by @Mann Ramblings. The character is so well-rounded and unpredictable, yet he's also likeable without being 'nice' per se.
I don't know that I'd necessarily put him in one of my books, but I could see Rush Romer dating Little Man if something happened to Ben. I don't think it would be a relationship exactly, probably more like an episode in their lives and they'd part, wistfully, but knowing it was the right thing to do.
Does that answer the question?
Thanks for asking
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These answers are likely not what you want to hear, but it's how I feel.
I don't have writer envy like that. I enjoy other's work for what it is. I don't recall a time I wished I'd written someone else's character. I'm glad for them when they write a successful one.
And you will likely be disappointed in this answer also. I am just not interested in borrowing characters. I don't really enjoy stories where that has been done. It's not my thing and if others are into it, they can certainly do so.
I'd rather write a new story with an author I like, rather than borrow characters.
Thanks for the question.
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To answer this question I had to really think, and yes, there was one story and one character that stuck in my mind, but it was a few years ago when I read the story. It's probably not true to say I wish I had written the character, because back then I read, but didn't write. However, @Sam Wyer wrote a great character named Cal in a book of the same name:
He brought the character to life in a way that was summed up beautifully in one of the reviews. He (Cal) shares what he's going through which draws you into the story and makes you like him, just as you would if you met him for real, he becomes your friend.
What better compliment could you give to an author than telling them the character they created lived off the page and was so real you wished you met him? So yes, now, "damn I wish I had written that character," and maybe I'll get close one day.
There is only one story that Cal would fit into and that's Camp Echo, maybe because both stories offer up a gritty realism, but also by pure hazard. Cal is inspired by a real life person the author knew, and Camp Echo is a fictionalised biography, so also inspired by real people. Pure hazard: Cal in Sam Wyer's story is nineteen, exactly the right age for Cal, the American who makes a cameo appearance in chapter seventeen of Camp Echo. Now there would need to be a little tweaking, because Cal is short for Carlton in Sam Wyer's tale and Cal is short for Calvin in Camp Echo. Nevertheless, it's kind of an odd coincidence and my story almost answers your second question for me. You know what they say: "Real life is stranger than fiction!"
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Thank you for the questions! I'm going to get to them right away.
#1 - Keter, in The Searcher, by @Mikiesboy. He's one of my favorite characters in any story I've read. The reasons are that he's complex, conflicted, quietly powerful and yet lovable and affectionate. Those characters are rare, and when I find them I take notice.
#2 - Silverwolf! For certain. Keter would easily slip right in among the characters in that tale without any issue at all. They're both fantasy/supernatural sorts, and a little time/planar travel would see Keter romping around with werewolves, tribal shamans and spirits. If I ever talk tim into a crossover, maybe we'd see it!
That’s it for this month. My thanks to the member who sent in the question and the authors who were kind enough to provide responses. If you like this blog, remember to send me any question you may want to ask so I can share them with the GA community.