Behind the Music: A Hazy Shade of Winter

Given that thrall has talked on her blog about the writing of this story, I figured I should go ahead and do the same. For me, of course, it started with thrall telling me about it when we met in person, and Lady Ru’etha making it quite clear that She would like to see a collaboration between the two of us. (That’s generally motivation enough for me.)

After that, there was a lot of plot discussions; for me, it was key that we not get too “vampire-y” about the creatures. I didn’t want this to be “thrall and Jukebox’s vampire story”, I wanted it to be a little less easy to pin down and categorize. Some of the characters in the series might call Dalila and her kind vampires, but that’s not necessarily what they call themselves. They could just as easily be succubi, or something far more mutable and unrecognizable, which is just what I wanted them to be.

thrall mentioned in her blog that I had someone very specific in mind for Flora, and it’s true; in my heart, she is forever Flora from the court of Amber (who spent a lot of time in high society on a Shadow very similar to our Earth, for the benefit of those who only dimly remember “Nine Princes In Amber”.) She’s just passing through this story, which is probably very lucky for Dalila. 🙂 The other characters didn’t have specific actors associated with them for me (it was actually quite interesting to see thrall’s conception of them) but I’ll confess to a sort of Cate Blanchett-y feel to Renata, in my head. Only more cutting and cold…I won’t get into much “who wrote what”, but I wound up really jumping at the chance to write Renata’s dialogue. (My favorite moment is when Carly asks if she and Dalila were lovers, a thought that provides her with her first genuine moment of mirth in centuries.)

Oh, now that I think about it, she’s got that in common with Morpheus from Sandman along with the skin color. One of the most effective moments with Morpheus was when he just started cracking up, because you never saw it from him. (Inspiration is sometimes just subconscious plagarism like that.)

Other than that, the story unfolded very naturally for both of us; once you’ve got the characters so clearly set into your mind like that (I might not have had pictures, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t know them) writing is just a process of figuring out what everyone wants and is willing to do and letting events take their course. Dalila wants Abby, Abby wants to photograph Dalila, Carly is protective of Abby. All those things lead to the story we wrote like water running downhill.

So what’s next? After all, Dalila seems to have what she wants by the end of the story, and both Abby and Carly have been drained white. But of course, no matter how much color fades away, you can still find “A Whiter Shade of Pale”

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One Response to “Behind the Music: A Hazy Shade of Winter”

  1. Callidus Says:

    Fantastic, fantastic story Jukebox. I’ve just finished reading “Whiter” and I just can’t tell you how much I love it. As I said on thrall’s blog, I would expect nothing less from a collaboration between the two of you, but really. Its such a fantastic story. I can’t wait to see how The White Album concludes. Many thanks and congratulations.


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