The Brat started life with my heroine, Gina Williams’ unexpected arrival.
“How would you handle a story that pivots around incidents that happened a quarter of a century ago?” she asked.
“I’m not sure,” I replied, and pondered my options.
How naïve was that? It turned out I had few options while writing The Brat.
The meeting of two mothers determines the destinies of their children a quarter of a century later.
Ben and Gina both experienced childhood rejection and betrayals that shaped their lives, so when they finally meet there’s little chance they will ever trust each other.
It takes the actions of Ben’s father, Theo, to bring them together. But will the consequences destroy the one thing he’s striving to secure?
Without giving away too much of the plot, that in a nutshell is the seed that creates the tension between Gina and Ben.
There are various secondary characters that muddy the waters and hike up the tension between them, and it all plays out on an extended time line which spikes the aggravations still further.
Both Gina and Ben have major issues to deal with, and the chemistry between them grows when they are forced to work together to present a united front to the outside world.
So, to answer your question, I did not sit down and map out each move for the characters. It was more a case of the story unfolding as it progressed.
Sure I had some major re-writing to do to tighten up each scene and ensure the time-line flowed accurately. But at the end of the day this was a magical experience where I found myself ‘in the zone’ more often than not while writing The Brat.
Gina Williams is a 35-year-old famous children’s author, who also writes detective mysteries under the name of George Williamson.
She was robbed of her childhood when aged ten by the late mother of the hero, Ben Kouvaris.
When he was ten-years-old his mother sent him to her ex Theo Kouvaris, multi-millionaire, who lives in Greece. When he returns to her funeral he is haunted by the beautiful woman who organised the funeral.
When his father orders him to marry he thinks of Gina Williams.
They have to overcome the horrors of the past and forgive their parents for their betrayals. Will their past destroy their future?
A voice from the grave filled her mind to the exclusion of everything else. “No one cares about a guttersnipe like you. You’re nothing but a snivelling little brat. You have no past and no future. You are no one and never will be. Your place is here, for you have nothing else to aspire to, and nowhere else to go.”
More than two decades later the words still fuelled her ambitions to achieve. They still goaded her into proving to herself and others that she could succeed. Her aspirations and dreams propelled her need to prove herself.
“Watch it, luv!” A hand yanked her back from the curb. “You got a death wish or som’it?” The blast of a car horn jerked her back against her rescuer.
“Oh!” Gina gasped. “I wasn’t paying attention…”
Her voice trailed off. Her memories stole her concentration. “Thank you.” She eased her arm from within his grasp and held out her hand. “Your quick actions saved my life.”
“Think nothing of it.” The man touched his cap, stepped back, and soon disappeared in the crowds. Shaken more than she cared to admit, she looked around and entered a nearby coffee shop.
She fought the ghosts from her past and wrestled them back into that black box in her mind she’d kept locked for almost two decades. With the exception of her agent and best friend, Liz, she’d never shared her secrets, and Liz didn’t know the half of them, just enough for Liz to realize her children’s adventure stories evolved from her childhood fantasies.
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