Monday, January 25, 2010

Griffin Hawke: A Character in Search of a Story

Hey all,

It's Monday again and you all know what that means. That's right. Time for a guest blogger. Today we have Belinda McBride, a fellow Loose Id author.

Belinda McBride lives in far Northern California with a bunch of Siberian Huskies and a Chihuahua. She also has a human family, but they aren’t as demanding as the dogs. She writes in several genres, and sees nothing odd in writing about werewolves in space.

She writes speculative fiction, with books ranging from science fiction to paranormal, and pretty much everything in between.

Welcome, Belinda!!!!


A few years ago, I was playing with a concept called ‘Hidden Heroes.’ The idea was to take a character from an unlikely background and write him as a hero. One of the characters that ended up being published was Pierce Wilde, the porn star from Leather. I’m fairly certain that one or two others that I drafted wound up being absorbed into other characters, such as Kell from Chrysalis and Jedidiah Wormwood Worth from the upcoming release Last Call Europe: Devil’s Advocate.

At that time, a character stepped out of the shadows; he was one that I didn’t have a face or a story for, but he was incredibly charismatic. This hidden hero was a former soldier who’d fallen on hard times, and ended up working as a mercenary. Because of some shady fight in his past, he was scarred. One eye was missing, and somehow or other, he’d also lost a testicle. On the outside, he was a scruffy rapscallion, inside; however, he had a heart of gold.

This hero had a princess, a fair-haired beauty in need of rescue. At that time, I just didn’t have the time or the inspiration to follow through on developing that story, but that hero stuck in my mind.

Last summer, I was doing an exercise on writing first person. I was simply playing with the princess in peril theme; there was no story in mind. I simply wanted to practice first person writing. After several rather bad starts, I opened a new page, and this is what I wrote:

A whore is a whore is a whore…unless she’s something else completely.

Who knows where that came from…I remember sitting there thinking that I was writing about a princess, not a whore. And then a clear, insistent voice spoke up, urging me to change the last part of that line:

…unless HE’S something else completely.

And Helios stepped into the light, with his shining copper hair, and those bedroom eyes lined with kohl. With the emergence of Helios, that one-eyed rapscallion also stepped up from the shadows and told me that he hadn’t been waiting for a princess…he’d been waiting for his prince. Suddenly I had two beautifully developed characters, and with that, I didn’t really need a story, because they were the story.

Sometimes writing a book is like pulling teeth. It’s hard and painful to get through. Other times, the book just seems to write itself. An Uncommon Whore seemed to glide onto the screen under its own power, and when it ended, I was surprised. Shocked! It took a few days at the beginning, but once I changed that one word in that little phrase, the chemistry simply happened. Griffin had stayed in the shadows because the chemistry wasn’t there with any of the heroines that I drafted for him. Once Helios declared himself a man, it all fell into place.
Over the past year, I’ve made an attempt to tighten the creative process. I’ve begun outlining my stories, working on developing characters before beginning the book itself. My writing style has always been a bit loose; I just start writing and see what spills out of my imagination. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes I wonder if trying to control my creativity sometimes stifles it a bit. Sometimes it’s just best to grab the impulse and let it take you where it will.

When it works, it’s magic.


Thank you, Belinda for coming to blog with me!!! I wish you beautiful dreams and profitable sales!!!!

Check out Belinda's upcoming January 26th release at Loose Id...

Read an excerpt at...
Buy link:

Be sure to visit her website:

Hugs and see you all tomorrow!!!
Follow Your Dreams


CJ England said...

Well, at least I'm not the only one who gets told to do by her characters.

They can be sooo bossy!!!!



Cherise Sinclair said...

Love the way he stepped forward and told you what was what. LOL! This sounds like a great read!


Phylis said...

Sometimes characters have to have that one word that sets them free! Sounds like a good read.

lindseye said...

I love hearing all the messy details of the creative process. Always looking forward to your next release.