1. How old are you?
Twenty-two for a little longer. I feel older.
2. What kind of work do you do?
I used to be a glorified secretary. Now, I think I am a secretary. Tom likes to call it otherwise — assistant or something. I answer phones and file things.
3. Are you married?
No, and I likely never will be.
4. Do you have any children?
It’s no longer possible. It’s probably better that way.
5. Are you in a good relationship to your spouse or lover?
That might never happen either. I can’t really see how that would work. The last guy was just…too nice. I’m no good for nice guys.
6. Have you ever been unfaithful?
7. Has your partner ever been unfaithful?
Would it matter?
8. What kinds of things make you angry?
People who hurt kids and women.
9. How do you express that anger?
With my fists. With my feet. With foul language. With stony silences. With revenge, when I can.
10. You’re in a scene with someone who is making you very angry. Why? What’s making you angry?
He’s hurting someone I love. He’s hurting someone someone else loves. He needs to be stopped.
11. What memory does the scene bring up?
We don’t really have that kind of time.
12. What memory does the memory bring up?
I can’t really discuss that with you. I’m not paying your therapy bills.
13. Describe something really bad you once did.
Does killing someone count? I lie a lot. I usually have a good reason, though.
14. Where did you grow up?
An apartment here, a rusty car there. The back roads and the motels of America.
15. What did your father do?
I’m not sure. He was there. He traveled with us. Then he left. Then he died. His job may have been to keep Charley sane because after he left, she got a lot worse.
16. What about your mother? What was she like?
She does too many drugs. She takes too many chances. She tries to take her life too often. She worships random deities she hears about from other drug addicts and conspiracy nuts. She probably still thinks I’m dead.
17. How did your parents get along?
Until he decided being gay was more fun than being with her, they seemed to keep each other alive.
18. Do you have any brothers or sisters?
I had two sisters growing up. Well, I had one sister and one “daughter” that we raised poorly.
19. What was the thing that scared you most as a kid?
Losing my older sister. Without her, I couldn’t have survived everything else.
20. Character, be the child you once were. Write about your world from the point of view of the child. What do you see? Feel? Write a scene. Show, don’t tell.
How about this one?
This one was a mess, too.
21. What’s making you run so fast?
If I don’t run, I’ll end up dead. Well, I’ll end up dead again. Or worse, I’ll have to think about stuff other than putting one foot in front of the other and breathing. Running’s easier than all that.
22. Who are you running from?
The things that are out there. The things I keep in here.
23. Who do you hate?
I used to hate Eric.
24. Why are you crying?
I’m fine. Everything’s fine.
25. What’s hurting you?
Nothing at the moment. I mean, I have a good-sized bruise from sparring with Franco at the gym, but that’s okay.
26. What’s making you so sad? Write a scene.
I’m not sad. Didn’t we just cover this? I’m fine. Everything’s fine. Everything’s wonderful. Great.