You are hereMarch Update / Screening Process
Will Screen ever find love?
A brief history of the character first – she was originally just supposed to have a one-line (or three) appearance and then disappear – she’s a fat nerd with purple hair…I essentially wrote her in so I had a spot to cameo if/when Cookie is ever made into a series/movie.
(No, I don’t have purple hair…I want it though. Blame Gertrude Yorkes for that. I’ve also checked with my day job, and they have no restrictions on hair colour, so it may happen).
Unfortunately, I wanted to do more with the character, so she became tertiary, and then recurring. She’s well and truly her own character now, not any kind of author avatar.
Also when I created her, I was really unsure about if I was going to go with the governors/new gods thing, which is why I waited until the Christmas special to bring it up, by then, I was a lot more comfortable with the world, and knew it could handle that element. (The governors are almost a kind of natural midway point between agents and gods, so it makes sense that they exist).
Eventually I’m going to want to do something with that element, and when I do, we’ll get a bunch of books headed up by Screen.
< Begin Tangent >
I hate how I introduce all of these cool concepts and/or creatures and don’t really have a chance to focus on them because I’m too busy setting up Stef’s initial arc and the world as a whole.
I probably could if I was a better author, but at the same time, I know I’m already throwing a lot of information at people, so I don’t want to overload them.
Like, for example, I’m sure you could build an entire series just around story thieves (…where the end of that series would probably be a big badass crossover fight to the death with the leaking pen’s story vampires). And hell, I would love to do that, but whoops, Stef is dead, have to deal with that first.
I’d also love to do a series of unconnected shorts showing people dying and how she appears to people of different cultures/worlds – I can imagine it as a comic series.
(In fact, it was because I was trying to figure out what I’d do as a comic writer – I was shaking my head at a recent Linkara video, and just going “I could never write superhero comics, instead I would…” and the idea for the Death series popped into my head, cover art and all).
Trashmaids are another creature I love, and I’ll actually get to show those off in the new version of Mirrorshades (it’s not really spoilery, but Stef’s first “case of the week” after Russia is a trashmaid being dredged up).
Going back to the comics thing (sorta) – it is because I feel like I’m trying to set up a complete world, not just write a single story. To overstate it by a few orders of magnitude, I feel like I’m trying to set up the Marvel universe, or the world of Doctor Who from scratch.
I want to tell non-Stef stories. I want other authors to be able to come in and explore different parts of the world. I would love for there to be multiple concurrent Agency series (Brisbane, Area 51, London, Bucharest, anywhere) – cause it would be so easy for authors not to step on each other’s toes.
But…in order to do that the most logical way, so that it isn’t just book-of-worldbuilding after book-of-worldbuilding, we have to follow Stef fist, and encounter things as she does, because she’s our window in, and following her at the start makes sense.
So yeah…one day I’ll get to play more seriously with some of the stuff I’ve set up.
< /End Tangent >
Back to Screen, in the general, her story is going to revolve around old magic vs. new magic – whether or not it erupts into full-blown war is unknown at this point, but it’ll be interesting.
She’s going to fall in love. Probably multiple times, and find someone she’ll want to spend a long time with.
Back when I was unsure of what I was doing with Stef, I toyed with the idea of making her gay – at one point B!V was going to say:
Computers aren’t the only thing you’ve got in common with Turing.
And don’t ask if you’re going to be-
I’m going to be murdered by poison apple!?!?
No. Spyder. Not that.
Dear god Spyder, do I actually have to spell it out for you?
You like girls.
Oh…okies…what’s for dinner?
Not that she was still going to be asexual, so she was going to be a homoromantic asexual. And then have a romance with another female agent (a tomboy called Marty). It was going to be cute, unfortunately though, it wasn’t going to last.
What was going to happen to adorkable!lesbian Stef after that, I’m not sure – I had a couple of ways I was going to go – one was setting her up with Milla (cause what’s cuter than one crazy girl? Two!), or even then have her end up with Curt (under totally different circumstances, and I’m not sure if it was going to be as cute as it was now…more of a “we’re the two that are always left alive, why don’t we just hook up, we’re always here for each other anyway” – post-war was going to be very morose).
How this relates to Screen though – I do like the set up with Marty, and though I won’t use the character, I may use an analogue of the character arc, enemy – frenemy – ally – lover.
Whether or not they’ll be OTP 5eva remains to be seen, but that, at least, is the plan.