My novel follows steps along the classic ‘hero’s journey’ and one of my favorite scenes to write was when Arden and Aurora meet their Gran Gran, who acts as a prophet for the perils and twists of their adventure to come.
I love all my characters, but I have a very special spot for Gran Gran. She is just so tangible to me, the eternal matriarch, a Caribbean goddess and powerhouse. Her mind, body, and spirit have appeared so present and fully evolved in my consciousness when writing her.
When I wrote the scene where the twins and cousins visit Gran, I easily pictured how imposing she appeared to the the girls. I thought of all the women in my life that I greatly admire, who could look at my face and know without words the making of my soul. My mother, my writing mentor, Valerie, my Aunt Sheila and sister Tracy, all morphed into the Gran Gran matriarch character. Also, my cousins godmother, whom I met in 2006, the year I visited my London cousins for 6 weeks, very much inspired my descriptions of Gran Gran. She was a beautiful elder and had such expansive and powerful energy, it was palpable that you did not want to be on her bad side!
I love these types of female characters and pairing this with Arden, and especially Aurora’s naiveté was fun to flesh out. The moment when an elder is like, “Listen up, I know so much more than you and I am trying to bless you with my wisdom, will you let me or not?” is so complex! I have been on both sides of this coin! As a “youngster”, you want to find your own way, without anyone’s help or judgement. But as an “elder” you’re part frustrated, part empathizing, and just wanting to be a helpful guide.
I loved building this particular scene, how the twins take in Gran Gran from the doorway, like a portal, and that their time together evolves into several struggles for power. I hope this scene comes across as entertaining while also relatable and inspiring to readers.
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