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Friday, October 24, 2008

Shona Blackwood

When I started writing In Twilight's Shadow, I believed that Creed Blackwood, the hero, was an only child. As alone as he was, I assumed his parents were dead and had been for awhile. I didn't learn differently until Maia visited a store with a glass pyramid made my Shona Blackwood.

Who's Shona? I asked as soon as I heard who the artist was. There was no chance she was unrelated to Creed, I knew that, but he wasn't talking.

At first, I wondered if she was his mother, but something felt off about that. I kept writing and putting questions to Creed. I learned who Shona was around the same time he finally told Maia about her. As it turned out, Shona was his sister and his parents weren't dead.

It was interesting to discover the true circumstances and how it all shaped Creed, but I had no idea I was going to write Edge of Dawn, Shona's story, not until I was ready to start working on proposals and she was suddenly there.

I didn't know much about her when I began. She was a glass artist and about 10 years younger than Creed. As it turned out she was an interesting dichotomy. Shona loves the energy of crowds, but isn't comfortable with people she doesn't know well especially if they're around her own age. I guess it comes from growing up an only child who spent a lot of time with adults, but she's much more at ease with people in her parents' age range than her own.

Her circumstances became even more interesting when I learned a secret about her--something she, herself, didn't know and something Logan didn't know either. Logan is her hero and the Seattle-based troubleshooter for the Gineal people.

Some facts about Shona. She's 26 and nearly 6 feet tall, something the other kids she went to school with continually ridiculed her about--and it's another reason why she's not completely comfortable around people her own age. Her eyes are brown and her hair is dark.

Shona lives in the guest house behind her parents' house and is taking care of everything while her mom and dad are living in London for a year. She's had a pretty easy life with her parents bankrolling her so that she can work on her art full time.

At least things were easy for her up until about 2 months before she meets Logan. You see, Shona has lost her desire to work on her art. It's as if her creativity has been drained from her and she's struggling with that. She's attacked one night leaving a nightclub and is rescued by Logan. This is when things really start testing Shona. Someone is after her, she's seeing monsters and sensing invisible presences, and things are moving far too fast with Logan.

And this is all before she learns about the Gineal and that she's part of this society of magic users.

Logan has his own list of problems to deal with, but I'll save that for another day.