Authors often have particular kinds of stories they tell. That often relates to genre. Back in my twenties, I wrote a lot of erotic fiction, back in the days of Myspace, when dinosaurs roamed the earth and Amazon didn’t sell ebooks…
I had one story that I told more than any other. There would be some people – two or more. They would be odd, outsiders, set apart in some way. Perhaps they would be paranormal creatures, or magical, or otherworldly. They might be monstrous. They would be lonely, and that loneliness would have hurt them and it was not obvious to them where in the world they might fit.
Then chance would throw two (or more) of these people together. There would follow a process of finding out that they made sense to each other. Past wounding might be overcome. Impossible-seeming situations might start to resolve. They might save each other, or figure out how to save themselves. Instead of being lonely, impossible heartbroken things, they would become people who belonged together.
It’s a story that can be played out in many ways, so I never got bored with it and I don’t think my work became too samey.
I wrote variations on that theme because I wanted it to be true. I note that this is pretty much the story Chuck Tingle tells, over and over, with higher levels of weirdness and less angst. I’m glad it’s not just me.
It’s not the story I’m going to tell moving forward. It’s not the story in Hopeless Maine, and it isn’t how the project I’ve been posting from here is going to work. These will be stories to at least some degree about people who have already found their people. Stories of cooperation and working together to overcome challenges.
In many ways what I’m working on now are sequels to the stories I used to tell. This is about what happens to the outsiders when they’ve had some time feeling secure and now know where they fit and who their people are. Stories that twenty-something year old me could not have told, because at that point I’d never seen it, and even the romances were based on hope, not experience.