Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Italo and Vincenzo

Once in awhile, you get a sense of satisfaction at a job well-done. Not a pompous chest pounding, but just a little voice inside that says "Yeah, that's it!" Of course, reviewers come along soon enough and put you in your place (some rightfully so, some for their own chest-pounding satisfaction). So I'm rather pleased with my latest writing foray and curious to see what others think. I wrote the first of the adventures of Italo and Vincenzo in a flurry. "Cloaks of Vermin and Fish" took around two months from idea conception to finish, which is pretty darned quick for me, as it is a novella, and I am notoriously slow with longer works (real job and life tend to get in the way of my precious writing time).

In all honesty, I can't remember much more about the genesis of the story than a thought I had that, if I were to try to pull the perfect heist, I would need a twin. But then I though, what if both of us were just plain stupid? From there my mind jumped to Venice, a magic bottle embedded with blinking eyes (yes, I think of these things while out running), a wizard living in a tower, a feud between the Assassins' Guild and the Thieves' Guild, the Cthulhoid god Dagon, and an old, dead grandmother.

As always happens with good bouts of inspiration, I could hardly read my notes after I emerged from my fever-dream of an outline. Doing the character sketches was where things really started to come together, where an over-riding voice emerged. When I had completed the sketches for Italo and Vincenzo I knew I had hit on some special people. And not just "special" in terms of their abilities or intelligence. I've written two Italo and Vincenzo pieces now, "Cloaks of Vermin and Fish" and (soon to be published, I promise) "The Shadow of the Doppelganger".

I think this is the beginning of what might be a long working relationship. I'm intrigued by these two and, besides, it's pretty easy to get your way when you're surrounded by simpletons. Besides, Italo and Vincenzo have one thing on their side: dumb luck. And as has been said before, "It's better to be lucky than good."

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