Friday, January 25, 2019

Let's talk about Paige NoΓ«l-Hernandez 🧘🏼‍♀️

Paige NoΓ«l-Hernandez is the assassin wife of Jorge Hernandez and makes her first appearance in The Devil is Smooth Like Honey and is also a prominent figure in A Devil Named Hernandez and And the Devil Will Laugh.

What I love about Paige is that she's incredibly calm and balanced regardless of the situation. She manages to keep a little sanity to the otherwise erratic group of characters and yet, you're left wondering if maybe she's a little too calm in various situations. I guess it's the meditation. 

Paige enters the series (and meets her husband Jorge) in a very unique and dramatic way. Although it's probably a situation that seems absolutely insane, for some reason the two find themselves drawn to one another and start a very fiery, intense relationship which dominates this series almost as much as....well, the violence. There's a strength to their relationship that can't be denied and in many ways is admirable. 

Of course, if you're looking for a fairytale princess meets prince storyline, the relationship between Jorge and Paige Hernandez might horrify you.



Friday, January 18, 2019

The loyalty factor πŸ‘ŠπŸΌ

One of the aspects that I think people find most appealing about my current series is the loyalty factor. Actually, as the writer, this is one of the aspects that I like the best too. There's something to be said about a group of people who can trust each other, literally, with their life. We find comfort when watching or reading about these relationships because loyalty is a trait we respect.

I feel that in today's society people don't necessarily feel that they have loyalty in their lives. If we're lucky, we might have a very small group of people that we would even put in that category and even then, many of us have also fallen into the 'blind faith' scenario, only to find ourselves shocked when someone lets us down. We've seen the disappointment in relationships, friendships, employers and family, just to name a few. To a point, loyalty might not only be a hot commodity but it might also feel like a rare one, making it even more precious.

When I think about shows that have been popular over the years, I notice that character's loyalty to one another has been prevalent. It doesn't matter if it's friends living together or a group of gangster/mobster characters, the basis of their relationship is often loyalty whether the protagonist is dealing with a broken heart or a broken body. It doesn't matter if these relationships are dysfunctional most of the time; what matters is that when needed, these people show up for one another.

I'm not sure if this is a trait that can often be explored in books since loyalty is something that is best demonstrated over time. The beauty of writing a series is that I've had the opportunity to create and show the strength of these relationships through situations that put the characters to the test. And when you think about it, real life isn't all that different.




Friday, January 11, 2019

Let's talk about Jolene Silva πŸ‘„

Jolene Silva first popped up in this series in the latter part of We're All Animals and has continued to be part of the cast of characters in Always be a Wolf, The Devil is Smooth Like Honey, A Devil Named Hernandez and the latest, And the Devil Will Laugh.

The interesting aspect of this character was how difficult it was to learn anything about her. She was always a mystery and even as the writer, I was having difficulty pulling anything out of her secret world. As it turns out, she had a lot of surprises that would come out as the series grew. We would eventually learn about some of her vices as well as see her more vulnerable side.

What I love about Jolene is that she is strong and even though she hits some low points, this is a character that always rises above everything and comes back stronger. Jolene is very passionate about what she believes in and she always does what she perceives as the right thing even though many times, she chooses to do so in secret rather than to share with her tribe. I think that many of us can hide within ourselves and try to avoid sharing our fears and struggles but in the end, just like Jolene, discover that there's more support for us than we originally believed.

I think this is an amazing character that creates a nice balance within the group. Although she certainly makes a lot of mistakes along the way and risks her own life, there's just something about Jolene Silva, a strength, that always makes her rise back to the top.


Friday, January 4, 2019

Do fairy tale endings really exist?

What's a 'fairytale ending' exactly and do people want them? More importantly, why you'll probably never find one the majority of my books.

This story all started a couple of weeks ago when I received an email from a stranger, let's call her a 'fanemy'. Essentially, in it, she said that she had 'tried' to read my latest book, And the Devil Will Laugh but couldn't through it because she found it troubling that the protagonist, was in essence, not the good guy. Not only was he not the good guy, but he was also winning at being bad.



Of course, this is an unusual concept in books because we are used to seeing a very specific concept in most fiction. There's a protagonist and he/she is the 'good' guy/girl. Then there's another character, usually the 'bad' guy/girl and of course, regardless of the struggles along the way, the 'good guy/girl' always wins. This is what I refer to as the 'fairytale ending'.

Obviously, it's not a 'fairytale' ending in the way you are probably thinking of right off the bat. It's no Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Disney cute ending but rather, nicely folded together that is the fictional version of a hot, cozy bath. It makes people feel good about the fact that the 'good guy/girl' won and the 'bad guy got what he/she deserved'...and they all lived happily ever after.

Or did they?

This is the part where I come in and shake things up. See, I'm not into that kind of ending. I find them a tad predictable and boring. I also find them somewhat unrealistic. Personally, I would prefer to give people something to think about after they finish a book. Kind of in the same way as the final episode of The Sopranos left me with something to think about when the screen went black with no further explanation. This pissed off a lot of people but you know what? Till this day, I still think about that episode and debate with myself about what that meant exactly. I've discussed it with friends and listened to their thoughts on the subject. Had this been the usual, happily ever after ending, I probably would've forgotten it by now or even worse, stopped caring.

The thing is that we, as people, are complex and so is life. Things usually don't end up all good or all bad and people are definitely not saints or sinners. Many people would prefer things were that simplified but they are not. It might work for some people but it doesn't work for me.