Thursday, April 25, 2013

Watch Out - You Could Be My Next Protagonist

            I’ve taken my “Light Riders,” Ryn and Aeden through a gamut of harrowing adventures in time. Three novels to be exact. ( Two on the market and the third scheduled for release in late summer/early fall ). So…now it’s time to give them a rest for a while as I ponder my next venture. And that means one thing – I’ve got to create an entirely new protagonist with his/her own personality. Sounds easy, but trust me, it’s not.  I’m actually sweating over this one. And that’s where you come in.
            Don’t be alarmed, but I’m actually “people watching” in the hopes that someone’s style, attitude and approach to life will jump out at me and scream – here’s your next character! And granted, while all of my characters are fictional, they do reflect composites of real people, thus making them believable.
            I still haven’t decided if my protagonist will be male or female. Or will there be more than one as in the “Light Riders?” Then, I’ve got a long checklist to consider:

            Yesterday, while waiting for my car to be repaired, I watched a woman point, stomp and pace around her vehicle. And each time she noticed something new, her movements got faster. Something to consider…
            Then there was the guy at the dog park who kept picking up his little dog and moving it away from other “undesirable” playmates who wanted to roll, chase and sniff. Another possibility but perhaps too “Monk – like.”
            And the list goes on. So…until I’ve settled on a character, or even a "spin-off" from "Light Riders,"  no one is safe. But don’t worry if you see me staring in your direction. The worst thing that can happen is that you’ll wind up in my next novel.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Rules for Time Travelers

            In the not too distant past or future, I’ll actually write a complete handbook for time travelers. But in the meantime, these simple rules should help you survive any time loops, ripples, bends or folds that happen on your journey. Good Luck!

1)      Don’t Panic – Time traveling is temporary. And just like nature abhors a vacuum, he/she isn’t too thrilled with time displacement. You’ll eventually get tossed, heaved, thrown or sent back to your original time and space.

2)      Clothing – Unlike some of the characters in recent fiction, you will not be naked when you time travel. The clothing you are wearing will travel with you. That’s the good news. The bad news is that, in all probability, it will be inappropriate or downright scandalous for whatever decade or era you managed to reach. So…the first order of business is to find something to wear! Check for:

*Clothes that are hanging out to dry
*Garbage bins (Yucky but doable)
* Rag heaps
*Anything left unattended
* Garden sheds, buildings, and houses

                         If that doesn’t work, try to modify what you are wearing using any available resource.

3)      Speaking – DON’T!  Wait until someone speaks first. Then you can figure out the time frame and appropriate responses. Steer clear of idioms and modern expressions. And be careful offering your opinion.

4)      Get a good cover story – Take a look at where you are and figure out the cover story you intend to use. Make it believable. (i.e. lost your family in a tornado would only work in certain parts of the country ).

5)      Establish yourself – You’ll need a place to stay, food to eat, etc. A decent cover story will help but you’ll need to either ask for assistance or offer to work, help out, etc. Remember – you’ve lost all your documents. No exceptions.

6)      Eating – Eat what they do so you do not call attention to yourself. (i.e. no one worried about trans fats in 1950! )

7)      Essentials – Take matches with you. You never know when you’ll need to start a fire. Just be inconspicuous about it if you arrived back in time before they were invented. 

8)      Trust your instincts – If something doesn’t feel right, make an excuse and get out of there! (This holds true in any time period).

9)      Enjoy yourself! – Time will go by fast!