Knock Knock! Who’s there? It’s me, Frankie Champagne from Deep Lakes, Wisconsin. I’m here to get some air time because my co-conspirator/creator, Joy Ann Ribar, shelved me in September and hasn’t given me any attention since.
Let me qualify that statement. Joy’s been pounding the pavement with my latest mystery adventure Deep Green Envy since its release in September, so I guess you might say I’ve garnered some attention. Let’s just say that I’m ready to spring into action for another caper. My news hound nose is itchy with anticipation, and I can’t wait to see what the season of autumn has waiting for me, the Bubble & Bake shop, and my vineyard.
I suppose you’re wondering what fictional characters do between books. While some may slumber and others may continue with the day-to-day activities in their normal fictional settings, I wasn’t created with the patience to endure either of those occupations for any length of time.
Instead, I infiltrate Joy’s mind when it’s most vulnerable, buzzing about during her solitary walks and chattering incessantly in her ear amid sleep cycles. What’s a character to do? To be fair, it isn’t my fault she loaded me with curiosity and crafted me smack in the middle of life changes!
If I were in charge, I’d take more risks, maybe learn martial arts and the bare minimum of how to use a gun. I’ve stuffed that into Joy’s suggestion box along with adding a wine tasting room out at the vineyard, maybe attending a wine convention where someone is murdered. Oh, I’d also like to delve into my family history, so maybe a trip to Ireland or Denmark is in order. Believe me, there are buried secrets to be discovered.
Okay Frankie, time for you to retreat to the background again: Joy is back and ready to wrap up today’s musings. How many of you give air time to your characters? Truthfully, I find myself listening in to conversations between my characters, allowing them a chance to speak without my interference. Sometimes I believe I am their medium between their fictional otherworld, my imagination, and my readers’ reality.
Everywhere I go to connect with readers, I receive plenty of questions and suggestions for plot and characters. Time and again, my readers have voiced their opinions and desires about character relationships. Shouldn’t Sheriff Alonzo Goodman get a shot with Frankie? Will antagonist Donovan Pflug turn into a love interest for Frankie? When will Frankie walk down the aisle with her romantic interest, Garrett the coroner?
Checking to be sure I sound somewhat sane, I honestly tell my readers that I have to check with Frankie and the other characters first. I remind them that relationships take time to grow and evolve, just like in real life. And Frankie, who’s been a single mom raising daughters for years, might not want to dive into marriage after being burned or might just want to discover herself untethered from children and personal commitment.
Bottom line: there’s so many avenues and rabbit holes for Frankie to explore. Plot ideas keep coming, sometimes in spurts, sometimes in dribbles, but rest assured, I won’t be expecting Frankie to take a long winter’s nap anytime soon.