Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Kiss Scene that Would Not Die

I was going through some discarded scenes the other night when I came across a file entitled, "The ___ Kiss Scene that Would Not Die." (substitute character's name for blank.) I opened it with a smile and gave it a read.

I didn't actually discard this scene. I have not even used it yet. When I wrote it, I didn't have a place for it because I had not reached that point in the story. I wrote it prematurely because the scene would not leave me alone. It would not let me write anything else until I got it down.

I encountered a similar situation for the second book in my epic fantasy trilogy, which is called Honing a Myth. I had some scenes in mind for an interaction between Abriel and Leordis, the barbarian king. I just HAD to get it down. I call these scenes pilot scenes, because they give me direction on where to go with a character. I may never use them.

However, I AM going to use the kiss scene. I love that scene.

It amuses me because I originally invented the character--I'll call him Jones--as a sort of a creep. He was almost a villainous ally. Well, he refused to take that role. He muscled his way into a much more prominent role. When I was writing one scene where Tory muses on the men in her life, I realized, when Jones leaped to the forefront of my mind, that he would leap into Tory's mind as well. I decided to let him do what he wanted. What emerged is what I think my best love story yet.

Jones is not a handsome man. I describe him here:
He was short, only a few inches taller than me, which would put him at about five feet seven. As if to make up for it, he was as wide as two men, bulky with muscle. He wore a common man's suit. Since our mission would take us to the manufacturing quarter, he would have to blend in. I didn't think he would have any trouble. He had an unremarkable face; bland and rather round, with sandy brown hair. He hardly glanced at me when we met. I curtseyed and his answering bow came across as awkward.
Here he is again here:
I had never seen him dressed in such a way before. He appeared as five feet, seven inches of solid muscle. He walked like a gorilla that I had seen in a menagerie once.
Not very appealing, eh? But now look at him, here, in an excerpt from the kiss scene.

As I watched him sleep, I wondered why I had ever thought of his features as unremarkable. Now I realized that he was quite possibly the most attractive male that I had ever laid eyes upon. I felt as if I had discovered a delightful secret, an elusive magical quality about him that only I could see.

And I realized that looking on the sleeping object of your attraction is very dangerous for your heart.

I realize it needs work. For example, how is he the most attractive male? I think it needs some specifics. This is a first draft.

What I'm trying to do with him is gradually increase his appeal, the way we gradually become more attracted to someone the more we fall in love with them.

What do you think?


  1. I love how you're tackling this. So very much like real life. Attractive people can become less attractive as negative traits are revealed, just as average people gain in beauty. Great job!

  2. Thank you! That's exactly what I had in mind. And you are so right about attractive people becoming less attractive when negative traits come to light.

    I think that's why Disney's Beauty and the Beast is their best animated film. Gaston was the beautiful, evil man who set off the inherent goodness of the Beast.

  3. I think you did further describe him when you said: "discovered a delightful secret, an elusive magical quality" I like this because it gives the feeling of a description.

  4. Thanks, Lisa! There are some other snippets of description between the "gorilla" description and the kiss scene, such as when she first notices the color of his eyes or when she sees him in a fine suit.


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