The semi-finalists are up for the “Can You Guess My Character’s Age” contest on Brenda Drake‘s blog. I’m not one of them, but it doesn’t surprise me much. You see, when I first wrote the story, I had mid-twenties in mind for my character. I also had in mind that she wasn’t a vampire, but that changed as the story progressed. Through several revisions and changes, the main character’s voice stayed consistent. And thus her age.
But based on certain feedback I’d received, I thought I had to change her age. But you can’t just do that arbitrarily without fixing the voice that goes along with it. And guess who didn’t do that. Truthfully, I entered the contest more to find out how old people thought my character might be so I knew whether to fix the voice or the age. In fact, when I sent in my entry, I sat for a long time trying to figure out what age she “should” be, and just slapped a number on. It didn’t work.
Although the age most people guessed is closer to my original intention, my main character is a vampire. As some guessed, she is newly turned (or recently), and I see her age as somewhat unimportant. She would have been about 24 or 25 when turned. This is about a year later. But she’d still think somewhat like a 25-year-old. The ancient, haunting way of thinking that comes with vampires wouldn’t start to set in until she’d been a vampire for most likely decades, if not centuries.
So here’s a big thank you to all of you for helping me sort out this detail.