How do stories evolve?
February 9, 2011
That’s a good question. I can answer it using Mad Dog Chronicles as an example. Almost two years ago, I was picking up a printout when an idea hit me - “a boss goes missing and her employees try to figure out what happened.”
If you haven’t read the whole story, I’m warning you now there are SPOILERS AHEAD. It was originally one story, with six characters. I had no idea I was about to write a six-part spy story told over 36 installments. My story evolved as I developed the characters.
Maddie Sullenberger was an “evil” boss. I created her as a boss you’d love to hate. I didn’t know she was a spy until writing Issue 5 (Flutterbuckets & Butterflies.) Her put-upon employee Stephanie Donnelly was just a reporter. While writing the first few installments, I realized there was more to her backstory than I originally created.
I didn’t write the entire story before posting the first installment. When I posted the first installment, I had a rough outline for each “issue” and I knew what the final scene would be in the final issue. I learned more about the characters and the story as the weeks went on.
By the time I was done, I realized the potential spin-off stories and sequels I can tell. So, if you’re hoping for a sequel, you’ll probably get your wish. It’s just a matter of when and which one I’ll pick first. Can Maddie stay out of trouble? What happened in Italy between Stephanie and Daniela Blanchi? What really happened in Egypt?
If you could pick, which one would you like to read next? Send me an email with your pick or go to the Gagengirl Entertainment page on Facebook.
And now for my favorite thing of the week...
Stitch is my favorite Disney character. I took the picture above, featuring Stitch, during Walt Disney World’s Flower & Garden Festival in 2008. It makes me think of spring and warmer weather. The character of Stitch made his debut in 2002’s Lilo & Stitch, which was set in Hawaii. The picture is a reminder that warmer days are coming...