The recent murder of a captive photojournalist in the middle east made me hesitate to use my fictional videographer as the subject of this post.
But, in spite of his imaginary existence, this character serves as a reminder that members of the press have been on the front lines of war and human suffering for almost two hundred years – they are truly fearless men and women who document the information that matters to the world.
Hesitantly, I click the M key. Calling my muse, my deceased galactic videographer, is always a crapshoot. If he is within range and in a good mood, he contacts me. If not, my attempt to summon him falls on the vast deaf ears of the universe.
**EAR PIERCING STATIC**
“Juan Reyes, here. Writer Girl, is that you?”
“Where in hell are you, Juan?” I shout. “I can barely hear you! ”
Deep laugh. “You’re lucky you can hear me at all. I’m orbiting Ranger Five, twenty-seven light years from Earth.”
“My readers want to know if you are fictional or historic.”
“Well, I was fictional, but since you redshirted me I guess I’m history.”
“So, will you tell them when and where the story takes place?” I ask.
I can almost see him scowl, and I hold my breath. He can be touchy and .
“I’m alright with the time, late twenty-first century,” he says, “but I really despised your choice of Washington, DC. Far too many arrogant politicians of all flavors. The coastal North Carolina location was beautiful. However, my favorite was Canyon, a planet two galaxies north of our Orion arm of the Milky Way.”
“My readers want to know about you.” I yell, covering my ears. “Can’t you squelch that racket?”
“Sorry about the noise. Let them know I’m a galactic heartbreak with copper skin, black dreads and a killer smile.” A pause. “I still dance on the edge of the combat zone, and I’m still searching for the perfect image.”
“Have you found it yet?” I ask, already knowing the answer.
His voice is tinged with sadness. “I found it twice, but as you wrote it, the second image cost me everything.”
“What is the main conflict? What messes up your life?” I shout.
“The main conflict is trying to get to the crossroads of history for the second time in my career. Filming first contact was the assignment of a life-time and it would have been enough for most videographers, but not me. Had to try for it again. What messes up my life? My brief affair with a gorgeous alien and my ensuing obsession for her.” Silence, then: “How about bringing that lovely creature and me back together in a sequel?”
I sigh. “You know I can’t do that, Juan.”
“You writers can do anything you want.” Deep masculine chuckle. “Don’t forget that.”
**RIPPLING WAVES OF STATIC**
“What is your personal goal?”
“You’re… breaking… up…” His voice fades and flares.
“Personal goal, Juan. Personal goal!”
“Always telling the story – no matter the danger.” His voice is a whisper, but his smile is bright in my imagination.
Is there a working title for this novel and where can we read more about it?
Learning Levitation. You can read more about Juan and his role as my muse in Sharpies and Quill Pens and Muse Humor in this blog.
When can we expect the book to be published?
Learning Levitation was a labor of love (alliterations – I love ‘em). It was born in the fires of Holly Liesl’s How to Revise Your Novel. Perhaps after my second novel is published I’ll revisit LL.
After all, I have to see Juan again.
How about you writers out there? What does your character have to say for him or herself?
Thanks Kirsten of http//ascenicroute.wordpress.com/ for inviting me to join this blog hop. I enjoyed it:)
Mathew Brady photo/foter/public domain