falling in love with my own fictional character

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A few weeks before I finished my first draft, a friend of mine, who is in the music industry, had warned me,

“Be prepared for feeling lost after you wrapped up your project. You’re gonna miss your characters. You love them.”

I have been working on my manuscript nonstop for months until I finally submitted it to my beta reader friends. Right now, I have nothing to edit, nothing to write. I’m even done obsessing with the layout and everything. It has only been two days, and I’m feeling very very lost.

Suddenly it’s like waking up without a job to go to (although I sort of have other work to do, i still need to pay the bills, unfortunately). It’s going to take a few days until they finish reading and commenting. I will have a few days to revise and send the second draft to my editor, who will take about two weeks to edit.  I can only imagine myself sitting at home waiting for my edit to come back!

I’ve always known that when I finally see my baby on the kindle store/iBooks store, i’m gonna cry like a mother seeing her child graduating summa cum laude (my mom, perhaps?). I just didn’t think I would feel like this right now. I miss being able to experience everything my characters experience, to feel their pain, to find ways to overcome challenges ahead of them, and to submerge myself in the epic love that I singlehanded created.

I made sure my characters aren’t perfect, but they are perfect to me. I cried when Josh told Violet how turning into a vampire finally made sense to him because he had to meet her. He had waited 200+ years to meet her. Damn, that’s the epicness (not even sure if that’s a word, cause’ safari is underlining that, but i don’t care) that makes my heart sore. It was so beautiful, so heart wrenching in a good way. Seriously, I’d just give anything to be with a guy who can write error free English.

I remember reading Jane Austen’s Persuasion and Northanger Abbey (not a big fan of Pride and Prejudice, too cliche IMO) and thinking to myself,  I just wish there was a guy like Captain Wentworth/Mr. Tilney. People always think of Jane Austen as this kind of fairy godmother type who knows everything about love. They forget Austen was never married. I didn’t think too much into it until now. I know why she remained single all her life. When she was able to create heros like Captain Wentworth and Mr. Tilney, who are just so freaking hot and romantic and funny and love the heroines despite all her flaws, how do you “settle” with real man?

Fellow writers, do you fall in love with your own characters? How do you cope? Am I doomed to be a spinster because I literally created the man of my dreams who doesn’t exist?

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About Nicky

Nicky English is a journalist, an educator, a podcaster, a couch potato, a dreamer, and a child at heart. Learning is her passion, so is the English language, which she believes is the tool to unlock the door of knowledge. Born in Hong Kong, she received intensive writing training at The University of Iowa, where she double-majored in journalism and political science. Apart from the Hawkeye State, she’s lived in Chicago and Philadelphia. When she was a guest student at Georgetown University, she fell in love with Washington, D.C. She also has a Master of Arts in Communication. A little side note—she cannot imagine a world without her Mac and iDevices. Like many crazy ones, she hopes to change the world one day at a time.
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One Response to falling in love with my own fictional character

  1. Kat says:

    I fell in love with one of my characters. Unfortunately, he’s a hitman and a legitimate psychopath, and incapable of loving me back, even in my own imagination. …Oops. It’s been a couple of years and I keep coming back to him. I just hope that if a man ever comes along in meatworld, he’ll be nothing like my dear L, even though he’ll never compare, because that would be dangerous and unhealthy. Fictional boyfriends can still be bad for you, and what’s worse is it’s nigh impossible to break up with them.

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