As I mentioned last week, part of rewriting a story is knowing what’s essential to keep and what isn’t. Replotting Impossible Takes a Little Longer I’m thinking that some of my characters may, in fact, have become disposable. I like them, but they just don’t fit the story any more.
In the previous draft, KC’s aunt and uncle provide her with shelter when she’s framed for murder — only it turns out they’re being mind-controlled by the novel’s villain and call the cops on her. Now, although she’s still framed, she gets out of jail on a legal technicality. She doesn’t need to run and hide so she has no need to visit them. And even if she did, there’s no reason to report her to the cops. So I’ll probably establish they died some time prior to the story’s beginning.
KC’s friend Rachel played an even larger role but now she’ll be in one or two scenes at most. Her role included revealing a conspiracy; expressing a religious viewpoint opposite KC’s agnosticism (they’re both activists with similar politics but Rachel’s fueled by her faith, KC by her lack of faith); and providing some exposition near the end. The conspiracy is completely different and Rachel no longer knows anything about it; KC’s best friend Sarah has taken over the religious arguments; and another supporting character, Alyssa, is handling the exposition. And the bad guy changing KC’s personal history midway through the book will prevent Rachel from showing up (the person whose wedding they were getting together for now died years ago).
I like Rachel and I hope she’ll play a small role, but unless I see some new potential — the book’s short enough I could easily add her in if I hit on a fresh angle — that’s as far as it goes.