Take Father Francis. He was to have been a very minor character, a possible throwaway character. He only came about because I wanted someone who might have known Paul as a young boy. Since Paul is Catholic, he likely would have been an altar server, so the parish priest would have known him, although not well.
Since he didn’t know Paul well, I considered obliterating Father Francis, but apparently, he had other ideas. Rather than fading off the pages, he has taken over the first chapter, the one in which we were to have met Janelle. But that will come later. You see, Janelle doesn’t know much about Clifton or how it shaped the people who grew up there. Sure, she’ll ask questions, but people won’t tell her everything they know. She is, after all, an outsider.
So, I need an insider. Someone who could let the reader know what Paul’s hometown and the people in it are like. I want someone to set the stage, who could see the town holistically through unbiased eyes. Father Francis – an insider who is an outsider.
I’ve just begun, and I’m looking forward to his revealing more about himself – and Clifton.