My inbox is usually a very stupid place, where people try to guilt me into either buying or podcasting about their junk. (Spoiler: I don't.) Recently I received this strange, somewhat emotionally exploitative email from Tablo. I started an account last year sometime just to see what was up and found it didn't really suit my writing/publishing needs. However, this email from them made me laugh:
From: Your Future Book!
To: Magen Cubed
Subject: Magen, I Miss You!
My Dearest Author,
It's been a while since I saw you, but I'm sure you didn't forget about me. (Let me down gently, please.)
I was hoping you might just be stuck for inspiration, so I put together a little prompt to get your words flowing again.
Write 10 things that readers will never know about my main character. These will bleed into the story and provide richness, even though you don't share the detail.
I get that it's all in good fun, but it's a bit silly to receive an email from a presumed abandoned novel. Especially when the abandoned novel in question has been finished and picked up by Booktrope, and I'm currently writing its sequel. That's a weird level of emotional manipulation attempted by a company that wants you to post your episodic genre fiction serial on their site. I don't know. Marketing, man.
That said, the prompt gave me the itch to write about The Crashers. Even though, you know, you're going to be able to read the book and stuff. (Whatever). But I want to change it up slightly. So for the next five Mondays, I will post five things about each of the main characters that don't appear in the first book (but may appear later on) for your eyeballs to gaze upon and enjoy.
5 Things About The Crashers: Adam Harlow
1) Adam doesn't own much in the way of physically-stored music. After joining the army and moving around three times since coming back from Afghanistan, buying music wasn't a priority. Except for his collection of old Motown vinyl he's amassed through trips to flea markets and second-hand stores across East Brighton City. He's very proud of that, without a drop of irony.
2) Adam doesn't own many books, either. His family never encouraged academic pursuits, especially not after his older brother Jamie refused to take over their father's car repair shop and went to college instead. It was better for everybody to push Adam toward the shop by taking college off the table, driving home his "average at best" test scores and grades. He only has a few art books, some books on Motown artists and history, a few fiction novels, and a well-worn copy of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass that he's owned since high school. This particular book, and a specific, well-annotated passage, bears a lot of significance in the next book, The Crashers: Koreatown.
3) Adam is Irish Catholic and the youngest of five children. While his parents weren't thinking about the religious significance at the time, Adam's name actually comes from the Hebrew noun ha adamah, meaning "the ground" or "earth." This means very little to Adam in the first book, but in Koreatown eventually plays an important part of his storyline and his relationship with Bridger, as well.
4) Adam doesn't dance. He swears he can't do it, even though Clara has well-documented evidence to suggest otherwise. He also swears he can't cook very well, even though he cooks most of the meals for the household every day. He swears he can't do a lot of things that he can, because he struggles with his feelings of inadequacy. Of being smaller, frailer, less competent than he actually is. That's his anxiety talking. Some days it talks louder than others.
5) Adam has never been to a gay bar. That seems strange to people. Was he afraid? Was he in the closet? Didn't he want to feel that he was safe and connected within a community? Adam always just shrugs when asked.
6) Adam would like to have children one day, but is scared to bring it up. When it comes to family, whether being in one or starting one of his own, his anxiety controls that particular conversation. For now he's content to babysit Hannah most nights.