Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Writer's Wednesday: The Implied Past
Expectation is what the character expects will happen in a given set of circumstances. Again from To Marry A Matchmaker: Henri says to the hero when questioned why she arranged for the wedding breakfast to take place in a garden during one of the wettest summers in Northumberland. Lady Winship offered Aydon Castle's hall. However, one must always consider the potential for her pugs to escape. On balance, the garden was a less tricky option. Hopefully the reader can conclude for herself that the pugs have escaped before and ruined one of Henri's events.
A habit is something that a character always does. For example, does the character always go to church? Or do they always take a specific route home? Or something they always do in a specific instance? For example: Henri put her hand to her chest and adopted her 'woman of sorrow' expression. It had held her in good stead for ten years whenever the prickly subject of remarriage was brought up. Again hopefully the reader will see that Henri has adopted a specific gesture and seeks to avoid discussing her remarriage even when she is trying to arrange other people's.
Finally there are networks. These are the community that the characters exist in and how they relate to other people. The hints about the networks help give insight into a character's past. The connections. For example in chapter 2 the local gossip in To Marry A Matchmaker says 'Miss Nevin had it from her maid of all work who is best friends with the doctor's cook who steps out with the footman at the New Lodge.'
Henri breathed easier. Servants. There would be some truth to the rumour but it would have been twisted and contorted even before it had reached Miss Armstrong.
You can read an excerpt from To Marry A Matchmaker at Michelle Styles's website(http://www.michellestyles.co.uk/) . To Marry a Matchmaker is Michelle Styles's next UK release (out in paperback July 2011).