Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Killing Restaurants

I'm up to chapters fifteen and sixteen in the Enchanted, Inc. re-read/commentary.

We pick up with the attack after the bad blind date, kind of an adding insult to injury situation. I was trying to give Katie some personal stakes of feeling endangered because of her activities. This was one last chance for her to turn back, and at this point she's fully committed to the cause.

When I was initially planning this series, I'd kind of planned for there to be several viable guys, so it wasn't so much a romantic triangle as her having multiple options and there being some suspense as to which one she'd eventually pick as the series progressed. I envisioned 'shipper wars breaking out, with each guy having a faction. That all went pretty much straight to hell the moment I started writing Owen, but I was still valiantly trying in this book. The scene in which Rod takes Katie home to help her recover from the attack was meant to be a chance to see him outside his usual persona so that he became a viable relationship possibility. Now it just looks to me like him being a good friend, probably because in my mental canon, at this point Rod already knows that Owen is into Katie, so he's actually playing wingman here.

And then we get into one of the elements that was in the concept almost from the beginning: using some of the real world's most fearsome creatures against the enemy: lawyers! And that brings us to potential suitor number 3, Ethan, the lawyer who may be a magical immune. I had a lot of fun writing the testing scene, startling subtly and then getting so over the top that he'd have to notice.

Incidentally, this was one of my "restaurant killer" scenes. I have a really weird track record when it comes to incorporating restaurants from the real world into my books, going back to my early romance novels. If I set a scene in a restaurant that's directly based on a real one, that particular restaurant will soon close or go out of business. In this case, I used a cafe near Washington Square I'd been to a couple of times. I had breakfast there with a friend once when I was there on a business trip, then I had dinner with a group a year or so later when I was there for a conference. It was exactly the kind of place I wanted for this scene, so I set it there. I don't think I was really specific about what it was, but if you knew the area, you probably knew what I meant. On a later trip, I saw that it was closed. I suspect there's a restaurant (or something) there again because space doesn't remain vacant for long in that city. I have such a bad track record with this that I've started making up restaurants that aren't based at all on actual places. But if there's a restaurant you really hate, I could probably kill it for you by writing about it.

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