Saturday, April 14, 2012
Marie Marsh: The Mystery Woman
My hope in the diner scene was to introduce Marie early so she doesn't come so much out of left field. But maybe surprise is better? Anyway, the whole point of including Marie at all is because she has a pivotal role to play in the sequel. What role is that? I can't say because I don't want to spoil it.
The evolution of Marie's character began with the first draft of what would be known as A Hero's Journey. I was thinking one day and somewhere I got the idea for a character who has this weird ability to see into people's souls and pry out all their dirty secrets or see their inner goodness. Not through telepathy like a psychic. The gift is actually in her left eye, which is really pale blue while her other is a normal brown. This "special" eye lets her see into the past. When she turns it on a person she can see their life story. If she turns it on an inanimate object she can see the history of that object. There was a joke in I think the second draft of the story where Marie looks at Alex the mastodon in the Plaine Museum and tells Emma that the mastodon is really a girl.
I worked Marie into the first draft as first a clerk for the city. Then later came the idea to put her in the nursing home with Aunt Gladys, where Marie's strange ability allows her to see through Gladys's dementia and steady her mind. Then came the rest of Marie's backstory that has her go from an orphanage to a mental hospital. In the deleted scene Marie was working at the diner after being released to a halfway house, but then she was fired from that job for making people nervous, after which she got the job at the nursing home.
Anyway, as a preview for the next story, I don't really like to call her a villain. She does some bad things, but only with good intentions. You might have an idea of what her intentions are from reading the epilogue. She's more a pawn in someone else's evil scheme. You'll have to wait and find out if she comes to her senses.
(Fun Fact: You'll probably be glad to know there are no more alliterative names to cover in these posts.)
N is for Northwestern Bound: Emma's College Years