When it comes to writing I've always been a loner. I love the independence of writing—of going into my writing space and letting my characters take shape, of putting them down on paper, and then breathlessly following along as I see what they do. So the idea of collaboration seems odd to me but I'm going to give it a try. We will see how this works.
Some months back I was invited to join a group of women writers on Facebook. All of us have had best-selling books on Amazon and been nominated for awards. We came together to cross-promote one another's books and out first effort was a collection of samples designed to tempt book clubs into sampling our writing. It is called Book Club Picks and sells for .99. This was followed by an anthology of short stories called Coffee Break Reads which is available for $2.99. Both books were fun to work on but for both of them we each wrote our own material.
Then we got this idea to create a town populated by the kinds of characters that we fill our books with, and we would each write a story set in that town, interacting with one another's characters, and centered on a theme. We decided that each of us would create a minimum of five characters who were part of a family or a group, develop descriptions for those characters, and then ask our readers to help define where the town should be, what it should be called, etc. Some of the authors are even asking their fans to name their characters. Because one of the things I most often hear from readers is that they love the names I give my characters, I decided I'd name my own.
So, as I lay the groundwork for my section of the story, I'd like to introduce you to five new imaginary friends of mine:
Daniel “Boone” Wilde is the forty-something owner of a bar, with a small hotel behind it, named Boone's Last Stand. Boone is a big man, not handsome, but rugged and athletic. In his young life he did everything he could to live up to his surname—Wilde—and has the scars, tattoos, and secrets to prove it. Since his father died and left him the bar and hotel, Boone is trying to settle down, especially because he has recently obtained custody of his fifteen year old daughter. Boone's a good man but is rash and impulsive and more used to settling issues with his fists than with his head. He's trying to change.
Charity Rose “Chaz” Wilde is Boone's fifteen year old daughter, the product of Boone's affair with a beautiful Creole woman, a dancer with a traveling road show. Charity was raised by her mother and traveled with her until she became ill, contacted Boone, and Chaz went to live with him. She has inherited her mother's looks and her father's reckless spirit. Both she and Boone are trying to make this work but it is a challenge sometimes.
Philomina “Minnie” Wilde is Boone's fifty-something step-mother. She was Boone's father's 4th wife and she manages the hotel. She is of the opinion that she is the rightful heir to the hotel and bar and she and Boone have a difficult relationship. She drinks, smokes, reads tarot cards, and does her best to drive Boone nuts.
Lucius Nedermyer is Boone's best friend from childhood. He is a tough, wiry, guy who works at the bar and doesn't put up with any nonsense. Lucius is fiercely loyal to Boone and can be dangerous because he is not afraid of anything but is also not real bright. He inadvertently causes more problems than he solves.