A Drift of Quills for October 2020
This lovely October day, as I look out to see leaves raining down from the trees in my yard, I am turning my attention to my portion of our post for A Drift of Quills this month. Our subject? We are each to tell something about one of our supporting characters. I thought it would be fun to hear from my fellow Quills first.
P.S. Broaddus, author of A Hero's Curse, is up first. Parker?
The supporting character I’d like to throw a spotlight on today is from my upcoming novel and work-in-progress, “The McGalliard Street Gate.” It’s a fast-paced, action-adventure novel about two brothers, Mikey and Lucas, aimed at 2nd, 3rd, & 4th graders that’s a fabulous explosionary mashup of Jurassic Park and The Hardy Boys. (You might recall I did a character sketch of “Doc” from the same story a couple of months ago. Can you tell I’m excited?)
Today, I want to introduce you to Jim Braxton, a retired Orlando chief-of-police ...
Thank you so much, Parker!
Robin Lythgoe, author of As the Crow Flies, always has something wonderful to share. Robin?
I am neck deep in the writing of Crow’s Nest, another novel about the best thief in all the glittering empire. (According to himself.) Crow is a little bit of an attention hog, so today I want to cast some light on one of his supporting characters: Girl.
First, I promise you that “Girl” is not her real name. Second, I promise that you’ll find out what that is in the new book. And that’s it for spoilers today! But how did she come by such an awful moniker?
Thank you, Robin! And now, for my turn.
It is a bit difficult to choose, but this time around, I will go with Velia.
Velia is an Oathtaker who I first introduced in Book One of The Oathtaker Series. Her unique magical powers include the power to discern truths from falsehoods, and the power to take on the pain of another. She also has limited ability to communicate with animals. Some might recall that when Velia told Lilith of that power in Book One, Lilith thought that meant that Velia might have a keen ability to understand the brutish soldiers from Chiran who were then at Lilith’s beck and call.
Velia and Mara, along with Basha, all Oathtakers, are particularly good friends. This grouping was a natural creation for me since my own best friendships have typically come in threes over the years. As I’ve experienced personally, these three able to speak truth to one another and to share their pains with one another. Of them, Velia laughs most readily and wholeheartedly. She is also one of the few who can set Mara right—and she doesn’t hesitate to do so, when needed.
We authors are often reminded to "show" and not to "tell" our readers things, so I thought I might do the same when discussing Velia. You see, in Volume Four, currently in the works, it is Velia who is able to force Mara to face some difficult truths. Here is an exchange (as yet unedited) when Mara resists the efforts of others to provide her with some much needed assistance:
This will pass. In the meantime, you need to let those who love you, help you.”
Later, and at a time when Dixon is away, Mara awakens from a disturbing dream. Concerned it might be prophetic, she rushes to visit Velia. The following (as yet unedited) is a rather lengthy conversation between the two of them. However, I chose to share it because it shows how these two relate:
“Now, you were saying,” she prodded as she set the tray on the table, sat down, and then took up the pot of tea.
We could all use a friend like Velia from time to time. One who knows us well enough to know when we need a dose of truth along with a bit of compassion. Do you think? Have you a friend like that?