by Martha Reed
Easter weekend was a big weekend for me for a lot of reasons, mostly because my late Winter/early Spring calendar booked up quickly and then the events turned challenging: driving up I-79 and over on I-90 in a blizzard for my sisters 50th birthday in Niagara; nervously keeping a wary weather eye on the river in Confluence during our PGH SinC Writer’s Workshop with Ramona Long. Last weekend in Vegas was enough to do anyone in although I have to admit that watching the movie The Hangover when actually in sitting in a hotel room in Vegas in pajamas does add a certain degree of verisimilitude.
But Easter was it! I promised myself, flipping the calendar page into April and May. After we get through with the egg dyeing, chocolate bunnies and cinnamon jellybeans, I am sending the family away for six weeks while I take one final pass at my manuscript in preparation for the PennWriters conference mid-May. It’s my birthday present to myself and I can’t wait to dig in and get it DONE.
Which makes me laugh even as I write it because technically my mss was complete last year when the conference was in Pittsburgh. The hitch occurred when I met an actual retired homicide detective last year and in talking with him for a couple of hours I realized how thin my homicide detective was, which meant – drumroll, please – back to the drawing board.
Which has me curious: have you ever met someone new who triggered a extensive revamping of one of your characters? What was the trigger that did it, and what was your response? Inquiring minds want to know…