The other day, I realized how much I owe to my characters, specifically Alex and Miles from my debut, ASK AGAIN LATER. I've said it before, and I'll say it again and again until I die of it: you can have the most interesting concept in the world, and the tightest plot, and the prettiest prose, but if your characters don't hook the reader, you're lost. I was lucky enough that Alex and Miles grabbed not only my agent's interns, but also my agent and eventually my editor. And hopefully, when the book comes out, they'll grab readers, too. It might make me sound like a crazy person, but I wanted a way to show my gratitude to them.
We would be friends if we met in real life.
We would most definitely not be friends. We would probably never speak to one another. And that's okay. You weren't made to please me.
Readers will call you a love interest, but part of me doesn't want readers to fall in love with you. At least, not romantically. I want them to love you the way I love you, which is also the way I love Alex and this book. All the ways, all the time. The way where I can look at Jell-O and think of you eating it, or hear a particularly pretty piece of German and wonder what it would sound like if you said it.
It's the two of you that made me keep coming back to this story after I'd already beaten it to death, and convinced me to rework it until it was better. Over and over again. If it weren't for you I wouldn't have an agent and an editor. I wouldn't have a book deal. I would probably have a lot of student debt and more stress than I ever want and I would be depressed and listless and shambling through life.
Now I can only hope that you live on with the readers.
[If you could say something to your characters, what would it be? Would you thank them? What would you thank them for? Leave your answer in the comments--or, better yet, reply with a post of your own!]