I just finished editing the first three chapters of Andy’s story – why is it that some titles come quickly to a manuscript and some just … don’t?
One of the things that had been slowing me down is a debate I’ve been having about one of the storylines. I have a secondary character who will link all the other stories together. Which, Christine d’Abo tells me, means he needs his own book at the end.
Thing is, I’ve always pictured this character as being gay. As I wrote Andy’s story, I discovered that another character is as well, and I see them starting into a relationship. Since I don’t want to change either’s sexual orientation (it’s a major part of their backstory and conflict) that means I’ll be writing a m/m relationship which I know will have some readers turning away. That doesn’t particularly bother me.
The conflict for me is: Do I wait until the character’s own book to reveal his orientation and then do a sudden reveal, which might tick off readers expecting him to have a m/f relationship? Or do I borrow a page from Jo Beverly when she was writing Belle’s story in the Rogues’ series and weave their relationship into the other books and end the story within another book? Or do I weave their relationship into the other books and still give him a book of their own? (I don’t see how that would work since the relationship would already be set – there would be no “will he or won’t he?” conflict, no sexual tension…)
I toyed with the idea of bringing in a female – one character may be bi, he hasn’t confided in me completely yet. But it’s a tough sell to convince me that a woman would be willing to enter into a long term relationship with a man who admits he likes other men. (Having a friend in real life who discovered several years, and a child, into her marriage that her husband was gay.) I know Lorelei James did it successfully in her Rough, Raw and Ready story, but … I’m not sure I have that skill. Yet.
As I said, I’ve got some decisions to make. And I have to make them SOON.