I have enjoyed thinking about an alternative plot and character development in my novel, The Fellowship of the Heart. It’s not been easy all the time the last three or so days because I am writing my snippets of new material side by side with my original, and I like my original. I paid a professional editor, though, for this very purpose, so I will continue to work this and see how I feel about it. As I mentioned last night, I will be asking your opinion at some point.
I just want to have fun playing with characters, developing their personalities, and plot variations. I hope you enjoy it, too, because, ultimately, visionary fiction brings us to consider the wonders of life that open to us when we awaken to self, when we choose to hear our Heart.
Last night when I added a conversation between Kathryn Frank and Edward Sampson, I think it helped introduce both of their characters and set up plot possibilities and explanations. Edward shows himself to be more reserved; he does not allow many people into his inner space. Kathryn connects naturally and easily to others; she relates well to them because she is full of curiosity, evidenced by her propensity to ask many questions. Is it too subtle, especially the names: Sampson, being an allusion to the biblical Samson who doesn’t let out the secret that his strength is in his hair? Does Kathryn Frank’s surname indicate her outgoing, bubbly, honest, and sincere nature?
Tonight, I want to reintroduce Anne Lafarnge, a protagonist in the novel and the wife of Eric. Paul Egan runs Paragon Engineering, where Anne works.
Paul did not bothering knocking on Anne’s partially closed door. He pushed it open quickly and with three energetic strides he crossed to the plain metal and upholstered chair in front of her desk and lowered himself into it.
“Anne, have you picked a team yet to work with you on the Riverview Canyon project?”
Anne smiled. “Nice to see you, too, Paul.”
He smiled back. “You always have a way of slowing me down, don’t you?”
“Only when required, Paul. To answer your question, no, not complete. I have three spots to fill, and they are my key positions.”
“What’s the hang-up? It doesn’t look good to the other senior associates when you start out behind schedule.”
Anne snorted. “Paul, we’re not even close to having a formal schedule. Why in the hell are you pushing so hard? I don’t respond well to being pushed, you know.”
Now Paul laughed. “You think this is pushing? C’mon, Anne, you should know me better than that.”
Anne sat back in her chair. “Then why are you asking about my team? I’m waiting on a response from Kathryn Frank and Edward Sampson. In fact, I’m seeing Edward this afternoon and Kathryn tomorrow morning.”
“Great! Progress! Have you considered Stan Boyle for the third position? You know, he’s a multi-talented man — engineer, business, and some legal background.”
Anne snorted again. “He is, let’s just say, not a good fit. So, now, I answered your question but you still haven’t answered mine: Why are you pushing so hard?”
Paul’s smile was gone, he pursed his lips and narrowed his eyes; however, he spoke evenly. His voice betrayed the intensity of his face. “Okay, I’m not pushing. I’m telling you. This is done by the end of the week.”
The pen Anne had been fiddling with slid from her fingers and hit with a sharp metallic clank on the floor. She tried to ignore it. “Paul, I will have this done. I’m kind of shocked here. Is something more going on?”
“There’s always something more going on. You should know that, at least I thought you should. It’s why I have been pushing the other associates to vote for you to take the new senior associate position. You can’t afford a glimmer of weakness, not a speck of indecision. Do you understand?”
“Message received, Paul. I want this, and I appreciate the mentoring.”
Paul spoke in the same even, positive-sounding rhythm. “It’s not mentoring, Anne. It’s winning. I support winners. I win.”
He pushed himself sharply from the chair and left just as briskly as he came in.
Ego energy fills this encounter. Anne got sucked right into Paul’s power trip, and now she is a pawn in his game — a willing pawn. She wants to win, too, and it seems she is tough enough. Heart alerts us to such shallow motivation, but we must have a willingness to listen, a mind to make the slightest move towards the heart.
Much more about this later in the novel.
Questions to consider:
How many times have you asked yourself or simply thought about the following questions?
Who am I, really?
What is my truth?
How do my actions reveal what I really feel and believe?
What would I do with my life if I could do anything?
What is my passion?
Why am I here?
How can I discover answers to any of these questions?
If you have considered any of these questions, I hope that my experiences and writing will give you some guidance. Please read my blog and comment and share your thoughts. I would love to hear from you!