Welcome paranormal author Natalie Damschroder to the Boost!
She's here to discuss the work that her characters do and here's what she had to say...
So, What Do You Do?
One of the hardest things to decide for my characters is what they do for a living. Except when it's the easiest.
Sometimes, a character's occupation is central to the idea. In my November release, Under the Moon, my goddess was clearly going to work as a goddess. But she also needed a regular day job. I knew she got her power from the full moon and the title had popped into my head with the whole story idea, and "Under the Moon" seemed like a great name for a bar. So her other job is running a bar. Of course, doing all that meant she needed an assistant, so that became Sam's job. And Nick was always going to be her protector. At least, that's the way I remember it.
For my October release, Behind the Scenes, the hero's job was easiest because I really wanted to write about an actor, and set part of the book on a movie set. The book was originally targeting Silhouette Bombshell, their romantic adventure line, so the heroine had to be kick-ass. But I already had a spy heroine in another book, so I made her a security expert, focusing on protection for humanitarian groups overseas.
When a character's job doesn't fit directly into the adventure plot, it can be trickier to decide what they do. It kind of turns into a cheesy pick-up interview. "So, what do you do? Besides haunt my dreams." In Fight or Flight, the heroine had to have a job that would keep her off the radar. Something she could maybe be paid under the table for, to minimize her public record. Since she also wanted to keep in shape and hone her self-defense skills, she ended up working at a gym.
The heroine in my second Goddesses Rising book, Heavy Metal, didn't know she was a goddess, and she needed a regular job that a regular person would have. I'm not sure why, but I picked marketing. It seems like a lot of people go into marketing when they don't know what they want to do with their lives. (No offense to the people who choose it because they love it and are good at it—I'm not one of them, so you have my utmost respect!)
I'd have to say most of the occupations that aren't directly related to the plot grow out of the characters as I write them. In a book releasing next spring (title to be determined), the heroine is a botanist who analyzes plant properties for their potential as medical treatments. Her mother died of simple illness, and that's her motivation. Her occupation feeds directly into the main story conflict, but I'm honestly not sure which came first, and when!
I'm always looking for interesting occupations for my characters. If you work a unique job, or if there are occupations you'd love to read about, please post them in the comments!
A Note from the Book Boost: I love coming up with careers for my characters, although, I admit to having a particular fondness for law enforcement careers. Thanks for joining us today. Please tell us more about your latest book.
Their power gives them strength…and makes them targets.
Quinn Caldwell is the epitome of a modern goddess. Her power source is the moon, her abilities restricted only by physical resources and lunar phase. She runs a consulting business and her father’s bar, serves on the board of the ancient Society for Goddess Education and Defense, and yearns for Nick Jarrett, professional goddess protector and the soul mate she can never have.
But someone has developed the rare and difficult ability to drain a goddess of her powers, and Quinn is a target. With the world thinking Nick has gone rogue (whatever that means) and that Quinn is influenced by “family ties” she didn’t know she had, keeping themselves safe while working to find the enemy proves harder each day.
But not as hard as denying their hearts…