Let Your Characters Write Their Story

You’ve heard authors say, “My characters were resisting me” or “My characters ran away with the story.” Some writers complain about that. I call it magic when the characters talk to me and tell me their love story.

When I set out to write In My Dreams, all I had was that snippet from the song, I’ll Be Home for Christmas–if only in my dreams. It is my favorite Christmas song and brings me to tears every time. In my mind, that song says all there is to say about wartime and a soldier’s yearning to be home with his family and his friends. I can not imagine anything sadder than being away from home for the holidays, doing the same old, same old, as every other day in the service or on the battlefield, wishing you could be home for the holidays.

So, when I sat down to start the story, Juan Montoya was a soldier, halfway around the world in a jungle, fighting warlords and guerrillas, dreaming of Christmas and song, and home. And since this was a friends-to-lovers story, I had Jessie Ortega back home in Lake Willowbee, being a nurse at the local hospital. And…no matter how many times I tried to start with Chapter 1, it just wasn’t happening. Until…Jessie announced she was a soldier, fighting in Africa and Juan was a physical therapist back home, working with wounded vets.

Like finding the missing pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, the story came together. Juan and Jessie told me of their childhood friendship, how they had been there for each other through everything, until their friendship broke, and they hadn’t spoken to each other in years. Even with the years between them, at her lowest moment, Jessie’s first thoughts are of Juan.

In My Dreams is a story of the power of wishes and being careful what you use them on. It will be in the Christmas Wishes on Main Street boxed set with the other Authors of Main Street.

Do you believe wishes can come true?


Jill James, romance writer

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About Jill James

Jill is a self-published author with The Lake Willowbee Series and numerous other books in paranormal romance and zompoc romance. She enjoys reading just as much as writing. You can follow her on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/Jill.James.author and Twitter @jill_james
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10 Responses to Let Your Characters Write Their Story

  1. susanrhughes says:

    That sounds great! Can’t wait to read it.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Anonymous says:

    After reading your story about finding your characters I can’t wait to read it

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Jude Knight says:

    Yes, I think wishes sometimes come true by themselves, and more often when given a push. I love the theme of our box set. No time is better for a wish to come true than at Christmas.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. E. Ayers says:

    It sounds wonderful! Can’t wait to read it, besides you always write great stories.Amazing how your characters switched professions and the story took off. Love when things come together.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Carol says:

    I love it when the characters take over and move the story into their true selves! Can’t wait to read it.

    Like

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