I am sure all of us writers have this problem. We are constantly creating characters to interact with the our main character, our protagonist as the technical ones would say. What happens when we create this amazing character who plays a tertiary role? Do we just forget about them when their minor role is completed? Or do we reimage them and put them into a different story with a few minor changes?
While I was writing Reverie, I was having difficulties writing the character for Malcolm’s love interest. She was coming up as a flat character and I was having difficulty figuring out the reasons behind some of her decisions. I needed to get to know Nyssa better. The only thing I knew at the time was she was a divorced mother of at least one daughter and she was a police officer. As I was attempting to write her part, November was approaching. If I have learned anything from NaNoWriMo, is it typically get me unstuck from whatever project I am working on at the time. I decided it would be interesting and informative if I wrote Nyssa’s story. I started writing when she still lived in New York and several years before she met Malcolm. I currently have about seven chapters completed. After I complete Dissonance and make the revisions to Reverie I plan on finishing Nyssa’s story.
During my experiment, I discovered I really like her. I changed the plot around just so I didn’t have to turn her into a bad character. So now as she has fulfilled her role in with Malcolm, what do I do with her now. She plays a few additional roles in the last book working title of Harmony, but it doesn’t do her wonderful character justice. I have spent hours on her falling love with the personality, all for her to play a major role in Reverie and a relatively minor role in Harmony? It doesn’t seem fair.
I have toyed with the idea of writing some of my secondary and tertiary characters’ story too. Sometimes the role of the minor character just isn’t enough and they need to be the leading lady or man. I have considered using these stories, short or otherwise as a marketing tactic for my Malcolm Stone series.
What do you think of spin-off books or stories based on characters of the books you’ve enjoyed?
Chapters One and Two of Nyssa Saxton’s Story, I have considered releasing the remainder of it here in a serial form, chapter at a time.