If you read my post about the Thanksgiving 2015 Descent Into Madness, you know how I tend to lose control over my supporting characters. Sometimes, they push outside of their boundaries and take control of the story in ways I never intended them to--and usually, this ends up being a good thing for everyone (even if it does screw with my outline).
But there's another, more subtle, way that secondary characters can take on a life of their own, and so I want to talk for a minute about Sahnsor Di'ent.
Di'ent was a walk-on bit character in White Stone. His only reason for existing was to give his two or three lines of dialogue, and he fulfilled that purpose nicely. He said his lines, the story continued, and no one missed anything from his exclusion.
But there was something about those three lines of dialogue. There was so much *relationship destroyed* and *promises broken* and *trust betrayed* in his three sentences that I couldn't get Di'ent out of my head. He sat there, a character who was meant to do one single thing, with a full load of regret and guilt and desire to make things right, and I found him popping up in unexpected places as I attempted my first failed tries at what would become Wide Horizons (that is a story unto itself--the way rewriting White Stone for NaNoWriMo 2013 changed everything, but I digress). And every time he popped up, it all came back--the destroyed relationship, the broken promises, the betrayed trust. His guilt and regret and desire to make things right. All these scenes were scrapped when the end of White Stone took a different turn in draft 3 than it had in prior versions, but by then, Di'ent was there, an established minor character with his own feelings and agenda, and I really liked what he could do inside the white stone palace.
And so, when Wild Tides rolled around, I really felt I couldn't ignore him. He needed a role to play, something significant to do, and that's what he got: [REDACTED TO REMOVE SPOILERS]*. His character arc, born of a bit part and three lines of dialogue in Book 1, can now be complete.
*Wild Tides, White Stone Book 3, will be available in Dec. 2017.
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