The first draft of my latest novel, A Ghost in My Suitcase is almost complete. Only one more chapter to go. I’ll work on that today. The next stage is refining, editing, chopping, making sentences sound more beautiful. This is the stage I like the most.
My secondary character, Ting Ting, who I just recently discovered, has definitely enhanced the story. She used to be a male university student called Kai, but that didn’t work because there was no tension between him and the main character, Little Cloud, so Kai has become Ting Ting and now she’s a sullen fifteen year old. She has become a major character with big problems of her own to overcome. That’s what can happen when you write a novel. The characters can go through a major gender change. You can only plan your story up to a certain point before other things take over like when characters appear out of nowhere. Tolkien talks of this happening too. Some of his characters wrote themselves into The Lord of the Rings.
Little Cloud is the name of my main character. She is the cousin of Jin and Maisie who appear in my book, The Pearl of Tiger Bay(Penguin 2004). A Ghost in My Suitcase is the first book I have written in the first person. It means you can really get inside your main character’s head.
If you have any writing experiences of your own you would like to share, feel free to add a comment to this blog.