This is my entry in the Absolute Write Water Cooler Blog Chain April 2010. This month's theme is "What would it be like to meet your novel characters?" And I'm going to cheat. I'm going to "meet" Noelle, who is certainly novel but right now is not a character in a novel. Rather she's one of the two leads in the web series I'm developing with my writing partner Annie LeFleur. And I should explain that since Noelle hasn't been cast yet, in this writer's mind's eye she keeps shifting appearance. Sometimes she looks like Felicia Day, others like Melanie Lynskey or Amber Benson.
Okay where is this?
If I said "my apartment" would that suffice?
Not at all.
Understandable. Well, I suppose one could say this is the real world, but that probably doesn't help. For that matter, it might not even be true, or at least not the total truth.
That is not any kind of an answer.
I'm your creator. Well, one of them. (pause)
Soooo...which one? The Father? The Son? The Holy Spirit?
None of those. Lets just say this is a dream, and one or both of us is dreaming it. In this dream I'm one of the authors who have created the fictional character Noelle. You.
No, really. At least from my perspective. Case in point--try to use your powers on me.
Just so you know--those words coming out of your mouth make less and less sense.
Noelle, I know. Really. Your birthdate in Bristol, the names of all three siblings, where you went to work, who who met, what happened to you there, where you went afterwards and when you returned to London. I know all about Cecily, about the Mayor and what happened in Paris.
So you know everything?
Not everything. That's part of what makes you alive and not my puppet. I'm not sure precisely what you'll do, nor do I have every detail. As far as I'm concerned, you're a mystery I'm still trying to solve--and like any real person that mystery cannot be completely solved. Hopefully.
Well, this has been a fascinating conversation but we seem to have reached an impasse so...
Please don't go.
I'm sure you think you can make me stay, but...
No, I don't. Please, stay. I cannot make you, not really.
Which means you're not my creator then. So bye-bye!
I know why Cecily is in town. (long pause)
Bravo. You have my attention.
But I cannot tell you.
Which makes your words a bluff.
Look--the elements of your life are the stuff of a story. That story has its needs, its requirements. One of those is the timing of when and how you learn Cecily's intentions. From those proceeds your actions.
That you already know?
Okay, lets break this down. You claim to be a writer or a god or something and that I'm one of your characters? So every single bit of pain I've suffered, all the losses and mistakes and accidents and the like--those are your fault. Right? RIGHT?
I was going to mention my writing partner Annie, but--yeah. More or less.
Sounds like mostly more to me.
You know, even if I didn't write you, if I'm just a deluded fool or figment of your own imagination, that wouldn't take away the fact that for you to exist at all there will always have been pain as well as pleasure. Always. Just like me. And Roy.
Leave him out of this.
He's actually central to...
I said--leave him out.
For the sake of courtesy, I will refrain from mentioning him. But leaving him out is not an option. Your stories are entwined.
Why? He's just this guy, a little too friendly and a little too nice. Somebody I know. A friend. Whatever f*ck*d-up sh*t you have planned for me doesn't have a damn thing to do with Roy!
Sorry. Not something I can discuss. But...no, I cannot say.
If you really do know as much as you say, that was not a smart thing to say out loud.
You and I are between worlds. Seems unlikely you can harm me.
Not a good bet.
Well, you can't physically harm me. Not for real.
Time to find out...
Doesn't the bitter always come with the sweet? How can there be light without some shadows? Without pain and loss, we cannot appreciate the pleasure or the finding. Please believe me. Please. I know. Too well.
Hey, if I'm not even real...
But you are real, that's the point. Maybe not real in the same way I am but the fact you threatened me is proof of the truth of you. I didn't expect that.
Then again, maybe this really is just a dream, eh?
No reason I can see. In which case, you made me instead of the other way around.
How does it feel?
A little disorienting. A tiny bit giddy. But--if you created me then using your argument I should blame you for a lot.
Can I at least thank you for dreaming me up?
No. Good riddance.
(Long, long pause)
That didn't go the way I thought it would. Probably should have just shut up.
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