Tuesday, March 28, 2006

If you could meet one of your characters...

I'm starting this post for a twofold reason.

First, I'm reading Song of Suzannah, the sixth book in Stephen King's most excellent The Gunslinger: The Dark Tower series. In my humble opinion, King's recent books have not been anywhere near his best work. The exception to this rule seems to be his Gunslinger novels.

The last one, Wolves of the Calla is the best of the series to date as well as some of Stephen King's best writing ever. The only other comparable King novels (for quality of storytelling) are Christine, Pet Sematary, The Stand, Misery and It.

(Spoiler Warning; Hilight to read)
In Song of Suzannah, the characters of Roland Deschain and Eddie Dean travel through the Unfound Door and meet Stephen King. While at first the concept of Stephen King writing himself into one of his stories seems the height of avarice, the supreme act of an unbound ego. But the thing is, in the context of the story and in the manner that it was written, this plot twist actually works!

Secondly (and oddly enough), before reading Song of suzannah I had been contemplating writing a scene in a future novel of the greater story arc to which The Unearthing belongs in which the story arc's ultimate central character confronts a fictional version of me. I don't believe I could pull it off as gracefully and tastefully as Stephen King did with his characters meeting him in Song of Suzannah. For that reason I'm not entirely sure I'd want to do it, after all.

However I am STILL very much intrigued by the concept. So I'd like to ask all of you, well those of you who are writers at least: which of your characters would you like most to meet, or alternately, like the least to meet? Likewise, how would such a meeting go?


Angel said...

Well, as I am currently reading Anne Rice's THE WITCHING HOUR and have rediscovered my love of her twisted, over-sexed and lyrical story telling, I'd have to say that Stella Mayfair would be my pick of who to meet. Her "life's a party" attitude, slightly devious sexuality and of course her heritage (witchcraft and the like)make her an ideal candidate. As for the one I'd like to meet the least, I'd be inclined to say the religious zealot albino in Dan Brown's THE DAVINCI CODE. Anybody crazy enough to do the things he does in the name of God leaves me no desire to enteract with them. In fact, I dare say he scares the living daylights out of me.

Anonymous said...

ToJ says: I don't know. Giving characters in a story life beyond themselves is one suspension of disbelief I cannot bring myself to do. Characters exist in the context of the story and trying to render them into other settings as fanfiction crossovers do, or trying an exercise like this, changes the character beyond the original. That's just my take, feel free to have your own opinion.