Oftentimes, characters develop fully while I’m plotting or writing. They start out rather nebulous (ie—alpha male with anger issues) and grow into “people” as the story progresses (and edits reinforce things). But every once in a while, I get lucky and meet a person where my very first thought upon speaking to them is “I have to make this person a character in a book someday.”
One such character was introduced (though isn’t the main character) in Fighting for Keeps. Nico Tancredi is the guy who has a gift…a degree of compulsion if you will. And he’s very, very real.
“Nico” is a friend of my niece, and I had the pleasure of meeting him a few times. He’s one of those guys who tells a really great story—about his work or a recent bar fight or the crazy ex-girlfriend. My brother is like that too. The key difference is, when my brother tells his stories, I always figure there is, on average, about 20% bullshit sprinkled in there with the truth.
With “Nico,” I might wonder a little, but in the end, I believe him–completely. He’s one of those guys who stuff just happens to. Kind of like Forrest Gump, he tends to be in the “right” place at the “right” time. And his life truly feels like a case of reality being stranger than fiction. I don’t think I used any of “Nico”’s real stories in TRAIT, but I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if some of the stuff I made up mirrored reality because his life is just that odd.
So, no, Nico might not the most alpha of the Agents of TRAIT, or the strongest fighter, or even the smartest. But he will forever remain one of my favorite Agents. And I hope someday I get the chance to see his real life counterpart again so I can thank him for the inspiration. And then I’ll sit down and beg him to tell me another story about something that happened to him.
Because I may be an author by trade, but I absolutely love any story that I can really believe in. And he has those in spades.
About the book:
He made her crazy. In every way imaginable…
Since her partner’s death, Jodi Israel has been perfectly happy playing Q to everyone else’s Bond. Electronics and machines are safer—and they are a lot easier to deal with. Unfortunately, she’s stuck with TRAIT’s newest recruit, an infuriating, arrogant alpha-male who plays by his own rules…and is hot enough to send electric voltage through all of Jodi’s circuitry.
Finn Danby heeds his instincts, even though it’s cost him his job on more than one occasion. The moment he sees Jodi’s fiery hair and uncanny engineering abilities, Finn’s instinct takes over…and it’s all libido. Now they’re working together to protect the unstable daughter of a high-profile politician—and the sparks are flying. Both in and out of the bedroom. But when all hell breaks loose, Jodi and Finn just may find themselves alone…and unemployed.
Find it online:
About the Author:
Seleste discovered early the trick to not being afraid of the monsters under the bed was to turn them into heroes. Since then, she has seen enough of human monsters that she prefers escaping to worlds where even the worst demons must play by the rules and the good guys might end up battered and bruised (or dead), but they always win. She resides in southeast Michigan with her kids and a pair of fierce slobber-monsters of her own. In those moments when not battling terrorists, vampires, or rogue clockworks, she loves to interact with readers all over the Internet.