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Writer’s Craft #115 Mel and Tegan at the Cultural Exchange

March 18, 2013
Lynda Williams

Lynda Williams, Author of Okal Rel Saga

Your host, Lynda Williams, is the author of the Okal Rel Saga (Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing) and editor of the Okal Rel Legacies series (Absolute Xpress). She also works as Learning Technology Manager for Simon Fraser University and teaches an introductory web development course at BCIT. For a list of Okal Rel titles see: Lynda Williams on Amazon.com.


On a Saturday morning back in, mmh, let’s say 2006, a few of the Okal Rel faithful were goofing around after a reading of draft scenes from Part 8: Gathering Storm, and our young friend, Mel, had a bright idea. “If Tegan and I were at the cultural exchange,” she said. “I’d go right up and touch Horth!”

I suggested this might be unwise, and we had fun discussing how Mel’s dare would escape being viewed as an attack, and how two such unruly youngsters might have passed the Reetions’ screening for sober, sensible attendees. And that was that.

Tegan and Mel circum 2007. Young women in the world, by now. But forever captured as they were in their cameo in Part 8: Gathering Storm.

Tegan and Mel circum 2007. Young women in the world, by now. But forever captured as they were in their cameo in Part 8: Gathering Storm.

But the conversation came back to me, a year later, in the midst of editing the same scene, destined to become Chapter 14 of the book. I needed an ice-breaker to force heroine Ilse to speak to Horth despite the Extreme Awkwardness between them. And Mel’s idea popped up.

So I wrote Mel and Tegan in, wholesale. Which is the first and last time I’ve literally put people from my real life into a book.

How about you?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. March 22, 2013 6:20 pm

    I loved that scene! And what better way to appreciate your fans? Or to honor the worthy? I literally put the Bel Canto choir into a scene once. All that the plot needed was a diversion; so why not the worthy choristers of my youth;-)

  2. April 1, 2013 6:24 am

    I have used real people and events, but I have always tried to fictionalize them somewhat. I have observed things that people do or say and use that, but it is usually for me to add motivation.

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