For as long as I can remember, I have been the kind of person who can’t let things go.  Much is taken into my head; little is ever surrendered. I am a person who wears her interests to tatters. A pit bull who grips the things she loves and shakes them until the stuffing goes flying out.

That’s a good thing for a writer.

Sometimes.

When I love my characters, I adore them. I may not love all of them equally…but when I love them I have a very hard time letting them go.

The fact is, I don’t want to.

This habit becomes a little problematic when the character is based, at least in part, on the physical and emotional characteristics of a real-life person—qualities I have gleaned (and, I am obliged to face this, surmised) from my researches.

I have turned myself into the emotional equivalent of a stalker.

It’s a useful…ummmm…skill, that emotional death grip. It helps to make characters as alive on the page as they are in my mind. But it is a very, very odd self-knowledge to be living with.

It is one thing to laugh at one’s own obsessions. It’s another thing to live with them. And it’s yet another thing altogether to, in one’s secret heart of hearts, smile at them in the dark.

And that is what I will continue to do. I know I will. Until somebody, somehow, somewhere, manages to pry them from my mental fingers.

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