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I’ve been searching for my image of Nikolaus Schild and thus far have come up empty handed. In my trilogy, Vampires of the Chesapeake, Nik is the eldest of the three immortals: Kian MacTiernan, Rees Morgan, and Nikolaus Schild. He’s also the cockiest, most creative, rebellious, and chivalrous of the three. When I first envisioned him, I immediately saw the concert violinist, David Garrett; a young, charismatic, talented musician. But finding David’s doppelganger proved difficult and challenging.
Here’s the Gold Standard by which I measured my future image for Nikolaus Schild:
In order to take his place on the final cover in the trilogy and be considered as Nik, the model had to look arrogant, rebellious without being tattooed from head to toe, and these days, that’s difficult to find. I wanted him to have a slightly Nordic appearance and look rugged, not baby-faced. After all, Nik is 1400 years old, he’s seen battle, reigned as a prince over Frankish territories, and survived the psychedelic sixties and seventies! He doesn’t apologize for being a vampire, relishes it, in fact, and tends to say what’s on his mind.
So, here is my newest image for my Nikolaus Schild:
What do you think? Is he Nik?
To help visualize when writing, I sometimes find images that most closely match what I imagine my characters to look like or to be wearing. In this case, Donella Fitzpatrick, from Vampires of the Chesapeake book 3, is attending Nikolaus’ performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Which dress do you prefer? The Chiffon or the Satin and lace? Which shoes? Since it’s December during the performance, I opted to give Donnie a stole. Would that work over either dress?
The image of Natalie Portman is how I imagine Donnie to look, except Donella has light gray eyes. So, what do you think? What should Donnie wear?
The Viagra I ordered to reinvigorate your romance scenes should be here before week’s end, and the bottle of Jameson is for our author in case the Viagra doesn’t get here on time.
Nikolaus/MC of Vampires of the Chesapeake
I have neglected my friendship with my sexy eldest vampire. We haven’t been communicating effectively, and I’m not solely to blame. He wouldn’t talk to me, wouldn’t visit me. But NANO forced my hand and like Adele’s lyrics in Someone Like You said:
I hate to turn up out of the blue uninvited but I couldn’t stay away I couldn’t fight it. I had hoped you’d see my face and that you’d be reminded that for me, it isn’t over.
And so I intruded on his privacy, stalking him, spying on him, probing him with questions. It’s November, and that’s National Novel Writing Month. Thankfully, he eventually came around, and now, we’re on more than speaking terms. He’s let me in again, and I have full discussions about who he’s dating, how his sex life is going, you know, the sordid little details that must make up a paranormal romance novel.
Donnie even came out of hiding this month to reintroduce herself. She’s as sassy as ever and
seems to have found a bit of self esteem because she’s bossing the Boss Man around and they are having a grand old time…except it has to end. That’s what Nik believes. You know how it is? It can’t be sunshine and roses all the time and well, the happy couple are bound to encounter some hurdles. I’m concerned that he might stop talking to me again when I give Donnie full permission to push his buttons, however, and that will put my relationship with Nik on a perilous path.
But, if he won’t cooperate, maybe Donnie will. She certainly isn’t shying away from seducing Nik after I gave her a wink and nod. I think she might make this temporary cooling off period nearly impossible for him. It’s what he thinks he wants. He’s forgotten that rules are made to broken. And I’m going to help her break them.
My muse is cranky!
authors, breaking the rules, finding your voice, following the rules, good writing, novelists, novels, rules of writing, the right way to write, unique voices in writing, what you should know before you write, Writing
They say use active verbs and forgo the passive forms. Rid your writing of adverbs and other superfluous words, such as: really, just, and very. Don’t tell your readers, but show them, for readers detest author intrusion. Remember to start each new chapter with the names of your characters, else the reader will feel lost. Avoid using too many adjectives, they bog down the reader and slow the story’s pace. Throw away prologues, readers don’t like them, anyways, instead, start with chapter one.
I could go on, but I won’t. Suffice it to say, there seems to be more rules than I can remember. And I wondered, do all these rules create a fast food quality to our writing? By seemingly standardizing the way most authors write, are we taking the color out of novels?
Can you share an author that you feel has a unique voice and why you feel her/his voice is original? I know of a few, but as I consider their style, I find they don’t seem to follow these rules, at least not wholeheartedly. What say you about the rules of fiction writing and an author’s special voice?