I gave birth to my two fantastic kids in the 1980’s. I nurtured them, taught them, listened to them, and was surprised when they did the unexpected. Now as responsible adults, they are out in the world on their own, making decisions that have both made me proud and made me worry, and living lives that, even while I care and interject unasked-for advice now and then, are no longer within my realm of control.
While the depth of passion, labor pains and financial backing hasn’t been nearly as intense, the characters I’ve created in my novels have also been nurtured, taught and sent into the world to live lives beyond my reach. Each character though has been a labor of love and they became very real to me while I was recording their stories.
Especially since I allow my characters to make decisions for themselves based on the pasts I created for them, there are times that they have surprised me as well. The time that I spend immersed in their problems, laughing and crying along with them creates an emotional bond that doesn’t go away the moment I write the words “The End”. Blogging about my stories and promoting my books does help keep them “under my wings” for just a little bit longer.
Occasionally my characters will return for a brief visit just as Caitlyn and Brandon of Forgotten returned in Within the Law to support Caitlyn’s cousin Tom in his story. In my current WIP a supporting character from Final Sin, paramedic Matt Garratti, will return for his own murder mystery along with his previously unseen wife Sudah; I am not sure yet if Julie and Jake will come for a visit. In the long run I’ve sent several of my “children” out into the world often beyond my reach and the feeling of an empty nest settles over me until my next project.
Writers like me tend to live in a whimsical world where we have the power to create people and situations. My characters become so real that I “cast” my stories and give them faces I can look at and remember. We wind up sacrificing our omniscient power as we invest time and emotion caring as our characters meander their way through the hurdles we throw at them. I will sit here and cheer when they overcome, cry when they are in pain and scold when they do something foolish. Then there comes a time when we must move on and let others, our readers, experience the ups and downs and know them as well as we do.
Sending your offspring into the world is scary – Will they be accepted? Will they be understood? Will they be loved and remembered? For the characters in my books the only measurements are books sales and reviews. I take it all very personally. These are my creations, my progeny, characters that I hope will have some influence in someone’s life. My love for each remains even as I create new characters – but to move on and dedicate myself to my next group of beings I must “cut the apron strings” and it isn’t easy.
This blog is in honor of Paige, Lon, Caitlyn, Brandon, Ali, Tom, Davie, Adam, Julie, Jake, Deanna and Ryan. My publisher and I just introduced Samantha and Ben in A Chaunce of Riches. Waiting to pop into the world in February will be Layne and Justin; Matt and Sudah will be returning down the road. I do love each of my characters and I get a thrill each time someone mentions them.
Favorite child status, though, remains with the two I actually gave birth to – Jenni and Marc.
About the author: Chelle Cordero is the author of Bartlett’s Rule, Forgotten, Within The Law, Courage of the Heart, Final Sin, Hostage Heart, and A Chaunce of Riches. She is published in two anthologies, With Arms Wide Open (VHP, 2009) and Forever Friends (Mandinam Press, 2009) and writes Living, Breathing, Writing, a Kindle blog designed to assist writers of every level. Chelle is also a partner in By-Lines, a freelance writing and photography business based in New York. Learn more about Chelle Cordero at her website http://ChelleCordero.com
Chelle Cordero, Author
http://bylines333.com/chelles-resume/Chelle’s Online Portfolio