“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” – George Elliot.
I’ve been kind of stuck lately. Inspired to write, but no energy to write. Then I started going through my Twitter inbox, which is up to over 2000 tweets, and found the George Elliot quote. It made me stop and think. Most quotes do, but this one especially now. Why? Well, part of my problem with my writing is that I’m wondering how relevant and appropriate it is any more. My books revolve around a paramilitary organization that transforms itself into a space going paramilitary organization. People have done something similar already. While the organization is in the background because I really concentrate on the story and the people, it is still there. And with all the conflicts going on around the world and what I am learning as I read, watch TV, and talk to people, I don’t want to be disrespectful to the men and women who are currently serving their countries by making stupid guffaws in my stories when it comes to protocol and how things would be run in the real world.
Also, I kind of feel alienated from my characters. When I’m on, I can actually hear them in my head. I know each of them personally, well, at least 8 of them, because they are all significant parts of me. There’s Jo, the leader, who has done a few things I can only dream about, like fly a fighter jet. She’s pretty intense and stubborn. Jim, her twin brother, who is calmer and her counter balance. Bill the tall, compassionate one. T.J., the perfectionist, and I do mean perfectionist, even his speech sounds like it comes out of a grammar book. The other set of twins – Tyrell, the fast talker, and Michael, the lawyer, who keeps him out of trouble. John, the computer expert, who is more comfortable in front of a machine than people. And finally James Jr., Jim’s son, I’m still kind of trying to figure out, but then he’s just a teenager.
Of course, there is the main supporting characters too. Jeff and Randy, the twins who are the reason for the time paradox, and Vince and Michael, the twins who have been together, but separated, for most of their adult lives. I seem to be stuck on twins because there are a few more that I haven’t mentioned. I don’t have a twin, I just like the dynamic and contrasts that dealing with them brings to the story. Yet I don’t want to be disrespectful to twins either.
What it all boils down to is the fact that I don’t want my books dismissed as being full of clichés or having being told before, so like T.J. I am seeking perfection. And in my journey to perfection, the years have slipped by, and a lot has happened, so I try to incorporate that in the stories so they are relevant. This kicks off another round of questioning and wondering how good my books are, which . . . Well, let’s just say I could probably “what if” myself to death.