So I’m behind. The plan is to get the critique response up on Sunday. There were a lot of comments–you guys do good work–and I’m still sifting through everything.
In the meantime, I’ve been working on a lot of different aspects of the book because as one thing shifts, it shifts the thing next to it, and it becomes like a giant box of gears, turning in all directions. And one of the directions it went in was toward the collages. In the beginning, still under the influence of Lucifer, I used Tom Ellis, the star of that show, as my placeholder for Nick. That wasn’t right–no shade to Mr. Ellis who is very good on the show–because that wasn’t my story and it definitely wasn’t my kind of hero. That collage looked like this:
That’s actually what the first scenes sounded like, too. But it just wasn’t right, and the closer I got to Nick and Nita as I ripped up pages and rewrote and ripped some more, the more I knew that wasn’t my book. So I finally sat down and thought, “Okay, what am I trying to capture here?” And as I looked back over all the stuff I’d written (most of which you haven’t seen) and all the rewrites and things that came closest to capturing what I wanted, I realized that Nita is another fix-it heroine with a savior complex, and I know that heroine. I love that heroine. She’s not grumpy, but she’s no sweetheart, either. Especially with Nita, there’s an edge. Lotta anger in Nita. (Okay, lotta anger in all my heroines.)
And then there was Nick. I had a helluva time with Nick, which was appropriate but still frustrating. For awhile, I decided he wasn’t the bastard son of the Borgia pope, but that was too useful, so that went back in. I finally realized it was the whole admin thing, the guy who’s good at filing. That just wasn’t right. On the other hand, the slick pick-up artist of the TV show was even farther off the mark. So who was Nick? I looked back over the stuff I’d written for him in the later parts of the book, and he’s calm, ruthless, cold, efficient, and . . . kind of a thug. That was the part I was missing. So maybe he hadn’t been his father’s admin guy, maybe he’d been his fixer. Maybe he came from a long line of crooks and thugs, which meant he was descended equally from devils and angels (assuming the popes on his father’s side were the good guys, that’s up for debate). He has a heritage of taking what he wants and a heritage of serving others. And he’s had five hundred years of observing humanity without emotion because he’s dead. He’d pretty much have the potential to be either a master criminal or a savior hero. His only real flaw would be that lack of emotion; he’d be almost a machine at this point, and a fairly scary machine at that. Okay, that guy I could get behind. More than that, Nita could put a major spoke in that guy’s wheel. That would be interesting. I thought they might look like this:
So I did another collage, trying to get the right vibe, warm yet threatening, weird yet all the trappings of traditional romance. It’s not done yet, of course. It probably won’t be done until I’m in the copy edit stage. But it’s definitely closer to Nick and Nita.
And now I must go back to writing. I just realized Nick isn’t the Devil, he’s the Devil Elect. He’ll be the Devil when Satan retires at midnight, Hell Time. SO much more fun to write.
So I’ll get back to you on the critique response. In the meantime, there are
bunnies manners in tomorrow’s Cherry Saturday. Bunnies manners are always good. Plus Labor Day Weekend! Have a marvelous last weekend of the summer, everybody. I’ll be over here writing my dead hero and the woman who’s going to make him so crazy he starts breathing again. I think I’ve finally found my story.