Thursday, June 10, 2010

And Then There Were...

Writer: The time has come.

Characters: What does that mean?

Writer: One of you has to go.

Characters: GROUP SCREAM

Writer: Oh, calm down. Look at it this way, I'm not killing you off, it'll just be as if you didn't exist.

Supporting Character: How is that supposed to make us feel better? (looks around) It's me, isn't it? It's going to be me!

Main Character: (looking for dirt under his fingernails) Perhaps.

Another Supporting Character: No, it's me. I haven't been pulling my weight. I've been stuck in the same place for chapters. No change. No growth. (points at writer) Actually...that's your fault, not mine.

Writer: Sorry.

Yet Another Supporting Character: I don't see why we should take the brunt of this. At one point there was a reason for all of us.

Supporting Character: We were loved.

Another Supporting Character: We were cherished.

Yet Another Supporting Character: We had biographies. I knew where I went to school. I knew I was afraid of spiders.

Main Character: I knew that too.

Supporting Character: Oh be quiet. You think you're sooo special.

Main Character: (smiles)

Writer: I'm sorry.

Supporting Character: You're SORRY? That's all we get? Where are the flowers? Where is the thoughtful tribute?

Another Supporting Character: Even a song would help.

Supporting Character: Yeah. Hum for us, writer-girl.

Writer: Hum?

Supporting Character: Don't make us force you.

Writer: Wow.

Supporting Character: Well, what did you expect? Did you think we'd go down without a fight?

Another Supporting Character: We're feisty.

Supporting Character: And resourceful.

Writer: That's true...

Yet Another Supporting Character: We know our rights!

Characters: (chanting) Save our arcs! Save our arcs!

Main Character: I can tell you what's going to happen...

Writer: Really?

Main Character: Who ever you pick will just come back. You'll realize you need them for a subplot development. For instance, what about...(whispers in writer's ear)

Writer: You're right.

Main Character: (shrugs) Of course.

Writer: Okay, listen up. You're all still alive. For now. But I'm editing one more time. If you don't pull your weight, you're voted off the island.

Supporting Character: But we're not on an island.

Yet Another Supporting Character: It's a metaphor.

Main Character: Strike one.


  1. Love it. And they do like to show up again, so be careful whatever you decide. I'm stuck with a character with a kid--actually 2 characters, each with a kid--because I let them live in previous books, and now they want their turn.

  2. Terry; I suspected as much. Thanks for the warning.

  3. Elspeth - Will you please stop getting into my head and broadcasting my conversations with my characters!?!? ; ). Seriously, though, I think we all go through this. I am having to do some major revision with some of the characters in my WIP, and they do not like it. Oh, well, that's why I have the keyboard and they don't ; ).

  4. Hehehe! Your posts always make me smile, Elspeth. This one was a hoot- I've had arguments with a few of my supporting characters too. And I've killed a few as well.

  5. Margot; The keyboard IS the ultimate weapon. However, it can work with us or against us...

    Stephanie; Thanks for letting me know I can make you smile - that makes me smile! I'm impressed you were able to kill off a few of your characters - other than my victim, I'm being strangled by guilt at the thought.

  6. I hate killing off a character! I always feel so guilty and I write mysteries. I think it's nice that you listen to the voices.


  7. Clarissa; It's one of the burdens we mystery writers must shoulder. My worst guilt comes when my victim is NICE. It happens from time to time.

  8. I pretty much always cry when I kill one of my characters. If I don't I know I haven't developed them well enough :-)

  9. Oh boy. Been there. Done that. The character kept the t-shirt :(

  10. Al; That's a very good measurement - and writing in the same era as you, I understand that death must be rather a normal occurrence.

    Carol; Pesky lil varmit. I'm glad I'm not the only one!

  11. Karen; I'm SO glad. Feel better soon. Sending you many virtual hugs.

  12. I had one too many. Sneaked up on him. Whoosh! Gone! Didn't even see it coming (or is it going?) See the evil author. (insert evil laugh here).
    Just kidding. It's always rough because you 'know' them so well.

    Giggles and Guns

  13. Maribeth; I admire your fortitude. I've given them fair warning - we'll see who dances and who goes home.

  14. Oh, those supporting characters. And they keep trying to take over the stage, too....

  15. My goodness! I laughed so hard I almost fell off my chair! Thanks!

  16. ROTFL!!!! Did they draw up pickets 'Save our arcs!' and demonstrate in your lounge room?

  17. Elizabeth; They can be pushy, can't they?

    Christine: Excellent! That's a true compliment.

    AA; How did you know?


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