By J. F. Lewis
When I was a kid, time traveling vampires were everywhere. (That’s a lie.)
I couldn’t walk out of my house at night without seeing them waiting to spring upon me in the dark. If only Mr. Garret (the time traveling gentleman from last Tuesday’s blog) hadn’t broken everything. Everyone knows the story, right? How he travelled to the future one time too many searching for blood of those he considered less moral than himself and encountered other vampires? (I’m making this all up, of course.)
Imagine his surprise when one of the vampires he meets is not just any old vampire, but his beloved wife? What might our Victorian vampiric gentleman do then?
In case you haven’t picked up on it, these time travel blogs are actually an attempt to explain in the strange nonsensical way available to me…how a writer as organic as me tends to work. I’ll be taking you through the process more each week and maybe manage to answer the question: where do your (meaning my) ideas come from? And maybe when we’re done, it will all make sense, I might even make this blog time travel a little itself.
But let’s focus on Mr. Garret a bit more first.
How would he react? Knowing your character enough to answer that question is vital when you’re a “discovery writer”.
How would he react to seeing his beloved wife changed into a monster like himself? If I know our Mr. Garret, he might travel back to try and discover what happened, to find the exact moment she changed and correct it. What havoc might that unleash across his own personal history?
As a writer, there are many ways to play with the terrible consequences that a (doomed or maybe not doomed… It’s hard to say this early on) quest like this might entail. What if the reader gets to notice that Mr. Garret’s wife is intact a different woman each time he travels back… That somehow Mr. Garret’s beloved Emma (or Jane or Rose) is being affected each time he travels and the vampire himself doesn’t even know it because his own personal history is being rewritten as well.
Great fun can be had when the reader knows something the character does not, but all that fun gets buried if the reader doesn’t think the character is behaving as he or she should. More next time…
And I wasn’t kidding about the time travel. 😉