Today's special guest is a long-time friend of mine, and she's Canadian, like me. :-)
Oh The Voices in My Head
If you heard an echo of “Gloria” in yours at that title, you are probably close to my advanced age!
I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea, but I have to admit that I go around hearing voices. They are pretty real to me, since I gave birth to their owners.
The characters in my novels have birthdates, full names, height, weight, colour of eyes, hair and skin, personalities, quirks, strengths and weaknesses – all from me. Most of them live in a little village that I created too. Although Burchill (my town) is based on Merrickville (near Ottawa, Ontario, Canada), my characters have no such origin. They are totally fabricated.
Well, okay, maybe they’ve got some basis in fact. I do know a lot of people, have met many more, and worked with lots of different personalities. But my characters would be insulted if they were told they were based on someone else. They’re full-fledged people in their own right. (That does sound a bit crazy, I know.)
The characters of Burchill—Emily, Langford, May, Alain, Edgar, Frances, Chief Dan and so on—are all people I can picture instantly. Like old friends whose faces you can never, ever forget. The moment you are back in one another’s company, it’s as though you’ve never been apart.
The stories and the plots are always there in my head, too. (It gets very crowded sometimes and circuits do tend to overload.) Formulating scenes causes me to stare at everything and everyone, and (nowadays) make notes. Life is endlessly fascinating this way, even the low points. I have written my way through my sister’s early death, breast cancer, and my mother’s dementia.
The Bridgeman was a reaction to my niece’s job in a vet clinic that dealt with animals from “farms” as well as a study of how someone very ordinary can be quite—far from ordinary. Victim gave me a chance to explore my fascination with the Ojibwa culture and philosophy. For Legacy, I drew on some experiences from the schools in which I taught or administered. As well, I was able to throw in a vision I had long ago about an evil preacher. In Seventh Fire, I gave the back story for Langford and Emily, the dark past that had been lurking since the first book.
Now I’ve got 3 books on the go: one about a psychopath who betrays her best friend, a “cozy” about a retirement home, and a children’s story about a ghost I once knew. Oh the voices in my head!
Come on over to Catherine’s website and sit a spell: www.catherineastolfo.com