Face Your Fears Character Interviews
My novel, Face Your Fears, will be published in July 2018. In order to introduce my characters to the reader, I’m conducting make believe interviews with my 2 main characters and possibly other important persons in the book.
We start with Nate McGuire, age 10. Nate has reddish-brown hair, freckles, hazel eyes and is in a wheelchair. He leans slightly to the left, his left arm is stiff and crooked, its fingers twisted. His legs twist and sometimes jerk. His right arm also looks stiff, yet his right hand rests comfortably in his lap.
BM: Hi Nate, I’m Bill Ma…
Nate: Hey, I thought people called you Mr. Bill. You mean you got a real last name? You look awful old, too. (He giggles)
BM: That’s true, for 40 years people called me Mr. Bill, and I am old. Now, can I ask why you’re home sitting in your room on a school day?
Nate: (Looks down) Do I have to tell you? Is this an interrogation? You gonna tell my folks if I say anything stupid or cuss? You know I do that sometimes. (Looks up and gives me a bucktooth grin.) Well, I’m sure you’ll hear about it anyway. I got kicked out of school for 3 days.
BM: Kicked out? Whatever for? You’re disabled with Cerebral Palsy! How could you get kicked out of school?
Nate: (Yells) For fighting! See the bruise over my right eye? (wiggles his head around till I nod—the bruise is barely visible) YOU should see the other kid! Jason. He’s got two black eyes and a sorry nose. I head butted the sucker! BAM! He saw stars, he even said so. We’re friends again, he came over yesterday. Jason’s a normy, I’m mainstreamed.
BM: WOW! How did you get into a fight? And 3 days? I hope Jason got more. He shouldn’t be fighting with a disabled person.
Nate: Oh, cut the crap. Yes, I’m disabled, but I call it DIFF-abled. Differently abled. Got it? (He waits till I nod.) Anyway, he only got 2 days. I got 3 cuz I also cussed at my aide, dropped the F bomb on her. It’s a long story. Ain’t you got any other questions you can ask me? Hey, you wrote the dang book! Why you gotta ask me? Bring this crap up all over again? You trying to make me look bad or something? Like I’m some kind of poor little cripple your readers will feel sorry for? Huh?
BM: Umm, no. No. That was not my intent at all. In fact, just the opposite.
Nate: Good. You know Jason and I got split into different classrooms after first grade.
BM: Did they split you up because you were fighting?
Nate: Hell no. Oops, told ya I cuss sometimes. This week was the first time we fought. Back then, we just kept telling stupid little kid jokes to each other. Then we’d get bored and I’d wink at him and he’d sneak over, grab my wheelchair and we’d head for the door.
BM: Was it recess?
Nate: Heck no. The teacher was trying to teach the class stuff and my aide was helping another kid. One time, we made it out the door, down the hall and woulda made it outside except when we raced around a corner Jason rammed my chair into the janitor who was mopping up some kid’s throw-up and we all went sliding around in it with me in my chair on its side. We had to sit in the principal’s office the rest of the day. That was okay, we smelled so bad she couldn’t stay in her office with us. (He starts laughing.) Yup, just cuz I’m disabled don’t mean I ain’t normal. I been in more trouble before, too.
BM: (I notice Nate wiggling his right hand and fingers around. He can’t raise his hand much above his lap, but seems to have good control. He waits till I’m watching, then gives me the finger.) Umm, does that mean you want me to leave?
Nate: (A look of mock innocence comes over his face.) Heck no. I was just showing you that I have good control of my right hand and fingers. (He giggles, hears an outside door close.) HEY! LACIE! C’mere! Maybe Mr. Bill can interview you, too. My sister is the other main character, right? Your book is about me and her, right?
BM: Actually, Lacie is an important character, but there’s a second main character named Jude.
Nate: Whoopee! I’m a main character and Lacie isn’t. Guess what Lacie? I’m more important than you! (Lacie walks in.) This is Lacie, she’s 15 and on the swim team and helps our neighbors with their kennels. Hey, Lace! You gonna take me with you to the kennels?
Lacie: Shakes her head, smiles. No, and you know the reason. Nice meeting you, Mr. Bill. Sorry I can’t stay, but I have to get to the kennels. One of the dogs is ready to deliver. She kisses Nate on the cheek and turns toward the door.
Nate: (tears in his eyes) Dangit, Lacie. Can’t you sneak me over. I love watching puppies being born. Please…Please…(Lacie shakes her head again. He looks at the floor.) Bye Lace. Oh, me and my big mouth. My big half-Irish mouth that always gets me in trouble.