Did you know I’ve been co-authoring a serial story at Scorched Sheets, the web site I share with Elise Logan?
She and I are in the midst of sexy, dramatic space opera and I am totally seeing my weaknesses. And my strengths.
I’m awful at worldbuilding (I can’t be bothered – it gets in the way). I can never remember from one scene to the next whether the transmitter my characters wear is a complink or a comlink or a transmitter (she’s great at the details like that). I’m pretty good at throwing wrenches into the system and doing it in lofty techno-speak that sort of (I hope) makes my characters sound like they’re actually part of their world even though I don’t have the slightest clue what the space ship, the Mercy, even looks like. I’m also pretty good at zeroing in on character response to other characters, although I’m bad at backing up and letting the characters take a look around at their environments and at each other. (Makes me wonder whether I have the same flaw in my own life, an inability to step back and see people beyond my response to them.)
Elise is terrific at writing great, vibrant setting, throwing alien character traits at our alien characters, and navigating the twisty complications I toss out without any thought of my own toward the effect on the whole story. She’s also really damn good at writing sex and wanting. If you haven’t read her imagining of our dark-elf alien Xu Schoellen, and his fascination with a subordinate officer, you should – and then you should nag Elise for more because I need more Xu. So bad I can taste him. Right there on my tongue. Him and his twisted determination to get what he wants without compromising his principles.
Do you think it’d be a blessing or a curse to be wanted the way I want Elise’s space-opera-writing-skills? Not for my box of writerly tricks, but for my own entertainment? Sometimes I picture her huddled in a dark corner trying not to breathe too loud so I don’t know she’s there and won’t ask when the next Xu scene is coming.
I don’t usually go haunting authors’ inboxes for more of what I want (Barrons, Wrath, Valentin Sokorvsky) and my salivation over Elise’s Xu kind of makes me afraid to write a hero who might be that compelling. I don’t like dark corners and I crunch my Cheetos too loud to escape notice.
Out of curiosity, who would you haunt?