Back in 2011, my dad and I were brainstorming ideas that would make cool stories and eventually movies. My dad (who is obsessed with zombies) suggested a story about a dance competition that is invaded by zombies. Joking around I said I could call it “Dance Dance Dead” a play on one of the competitions I have competed with in the past (Dance Dance Canada).
Well the name stuck and I began brainstorming this idea for a zombie book I had no idea how to write. I was still a very naive writer, too afraid to step out of my comfort zone in fear of what someone else might say or think about me for writing it. And on top of all that I had never read a zombie book or seen a zombie movie. I was going into this blind and trying to take popular creatures in today’s culture and turn them into something I wanted to completely envision myself.
And yet, I prevailed. Before I knew it I had created Bridget Green, someone who was what a part of me always wanted to be- rich, a single child, the best dancer, wild and unpredictable- and simultaneously someone who I was glad wasn’t me- distant from her mother, afraid that people resented her and a little too loose lipped with her cursing. Bridget became my alter ego. A part of me so big and realistic, that I stopped writing my zombie novel. I went back and forth on it for a few years, getting bursts of inspiration and ideas for parts that took place outside of the zombie invasion. The cheesy bad teen zombie book became a story about romance and about a girl who built up walls around her heart because she loved too freely and couldn’t stand getting turned down by her best friend and duet partner of six years. It was about an only child who was desperately lonely and found comfort in dance because that’s where she wasn’t alone. And yes, it stayed a story that allowed me to put every sarcastic thought I’ve ever had and every ridiculous aspect of the dance world into a story that both poked fun and embraced the art form that so many have lost and found themselves in.
My dad will be heartbroken; in the last few months I have picked up “Dance Dance Dead” but I have completely removed the zombies. I want to simply state my reasoning before he gives me the silent treatment for the next week: Bridget Green and Tye Terrance are too realistic for me to send through an event that doesn’t belong in this world. Maybe if I was a fantasy writer and could find a way to make zombies work I could bring your idea to life, but I can’t. I can’t do your zombies justices and put a part of myself through a zombie invasion and create something that I would want to read. Regardless of who else would read it, I wouldn’t, and that’s a terrible thing to ask a writer to do.
With all that said, I am still trying to find the right way to continue this novel, but I have a few ideas that I think will bring the characters and this world together once and for all! 🙂
So what have I been doing the past few years if not writing about a zombie invasion? Well, I’ve created back stories, relationships, future rendezvous, dance rehearsals, family histories, Facebook pages and a series of events that will lead Bridget and Tye together.
I’ve written short stories of Bridget and Tye’s future after the main story; I’ve created a persona for the rich girl that is just as broken as anyone else; I’ve written and rewritten many early chapters that focus on my new idea of “Dance Dance Dead” as I continuously avoided writing the original.
And recently I’ve created the Brye-ble. Bridget + Tye = Brye. Brye + My black book that stores every single thing I know about Bridget, Tye, their families and their world (or a bible as I call it) = The Brye-ble.
I’m not changing the name so get used to it.
Now as promised, I will include a few things from the Brye-ble. If you guys enjoy it and want to learn more, please let me know in the comments! I will also answer any questions about the creative process, characters, inspiration or any details from the Brye-ble that you wish me to expand on in another blog post (if there is enough demand). Thanks! 🙂
Bridget Green. Birthday- April 30th. Age- 16/17
Mid-length brown hair that falls in soft curls. Piercing green eyes that have been trained to give away no hidden emotions.
Currently residing in Thunder Bay, ON but was born in Waterloo.
The only daughter of Victoria and Richard Green- A misunderstood gold-digger and extremely wealthy businessman. If you ask Bridget what they do her answer would be “My mom spends all my dad’s hard earn money that he makes by being at the top of his business, whatever that is.”
A dancer at Triple Dance Academy. Began dancing with her current duet partner Tye Terrance when they were ten years old. Their duets have become the most awaited number at each competition. Their effortless chemistry and the ease that they have when they dance together has made them the winners of many special awards and scholarships across North America.
Current relationship status- dating other boys while pretending that she has no feelings for her incredibly attractive and absolutely ridiculous best friend.
Tye Terrance. Birthday- late November/early December. Age- 16.
Dark brown hair. Sometimes grown to the point where it covers his gold eyes. Gold eyes- not like gold gold, but like a brown colour that has too much sparkle to be brown. Eyes are very expressive.
Currently residing in Thunder Bay, ON.
The eldest child of Mr. And Mrs. Terrance; two parents who worked to get where they are today and continue to work even though Mr. Terrence’s latest promotion ensures that they’d never have to again. Has a younger sibling, Becky, whom has become Bridget’s best girl friend by default.
Has been dancing at Triple Dance Academy for as long as he can remember. From the age of 7 to 9 he had many different duet partners, but none that ever made it to a second year. He never really liked any of the girls Miss Tiana paired him up with and was going to turn down duets for good when Miss Tiana asked him to give it one last shot. He was partnered with Bridget Green at age 10 and has been competing by her side for six years.
Current relationship status- About to celebrate his ten month anniversary with his girlfriend Amy. Although she can be high strung and constantly complains about the amount of time he spends with Bridget, they’re together and he thinks he might have finally stopped everyone from asking how long him and Bridget have been dating for.