In The Lover, Book 2 in the Awakening Series, Jeremy Williams, a romantic hero with a physical disability, takes center stage. This character challenged me as a writer.
For weeks I was stuck in a scene where he is looking out the window, contemplating. Why was he there? What was he thinking about? How could I move the two main characters forward romantically when there was such an awkwardness to get past and why was there such an awkwardness between two people who are supposed to be romantically attracted to each other?
Working with this character definitely helped me grow as a writer.
Writing a romantic hero with a disability forced me to look at intimacy from a perspective outside what’s typical or predictable which turned out to be a wonderful experience, in spite of how challenging and humbling it was.
At the conclusion of the manuscript I found myself missing working with Jeremy and though I knew he’d appear in The Messenger, he would be a supporting character.
I wanted to honor him as a strong character but I couldn’t rob Logan Doyle of his role as the romantic hero.
As I wrapped that manuscript, I knew that I was more or less saying good-bye to this character.
He and Josie had returned home and were theoretically carrying on with their happily ever after.
When I began work on the final book in the series, The Seer, I realized that Jeremy wasn’t finished with me.
As I started putting the pieces of the story in place I realized that this unique hero could play a significant role moving the story forward. It seemed a great way to honor a fabulous character.
But Jeremy refused to be sidelined as a supporting character.
Supporting characters are often bit players in the greater drama.
So once again I found myself challenged by a character with a disability. What was his day to day life like? How were things between he and Josephina progressing? How would he fit into an atypical family that was growing and evolving with each new book?
Looking at events from Jeremy’s point of view provided plot twists I hadn’t considered and showed me where various aspects of the storyline were weak.
Supporting characters are observers so they are able to come up with conclusions about characters and the characters’ behavior. This can tip a writer off as to when something is a flaw or help them identify a quality that should be exploited further.
He shaped the book in ways I never expected, given all of my focus was on the romantic hero, Parmeet Sarin, and his challenges.
And my challenge of bringing a character who had been on the sidelines for awhile center stage.
I hope you will enjoy reading about Jeremy’s continuing adventures, along with those of the other characters, in The Seer, available this autumn.