Sunday, June 2, 2013

Hypothetically Speaking of Ruby and Amber

While listening to some Lady Gaga on Thursday, I had an idea.
Now it has me wondering whether or not "Te Busque" can manage to remain Talia's story. As I brainstorm about Amber and her motivation as the story's antagonist, I'm finding her becoming more and more complex.

Is my story evolving into a multiple character story where I'll be writing about Amber, Ruby, Scarlet and Vanessa in great length instead of just Talia?

Vanessa is the only wild card I have because I'm having trouble coming up with any sort of back story for her. Do I have enough in my head to keep her where she is in Talia's social circle? Compared to Scarlet, she's more reserved, less emotionally charged, a "I'll give you the bottom line" kind of girl and practically her polar opposite.
The only difference is, regardless of that, they are close friends with Talia and each other.

Amber and Ruby on the other hand... not so much...

From a physical standpoint, Scarlet and Ruby are twin sisters, so they have the same build. Vanessa and Amber, on the other hand, are voluptuous, have curses and rely on sensuality rather than dance skill to impress.

I played around with the idea that Amber tried out for the dance troupe more than once and she was denied her shot because she didn't have quite what they were looking for. She met Alejandro at the try-outs and he encourages her to not give up because he sees potential in her. She takes it as a compliment and is smitten, but learns later on that he's involved with Talia.

While listening to "Just Dance," I thought of Amber auditioning with two male back-up dancers that I've imagined at her flank during Karmin's "I'm just sayin' "
Where these back-up dancers came from, I have no idea... that's just what comes to mind.

Her routine with them is very tame and that's the reason why it doesn't make the cut.
Then to show what they're looking for, whoever's running the try-outs asks Ruby to do the routine from her own audition.
To "Love Game"... the lyric "I wanna take a ride on your disco stick" invokes an image of pole dancing.

Not surprisingly, Amber is frustrated by this... this leads her to believe that Ruby is a very smug, self-assured individual... but she never openly admits this. I just know that to be true.

From there, the ideas just kept building and building.

I also considered Amber being a waitress at the club. She had a rough past that she's trying to get away from, but she's admired the dancers and the attention they get, she just couldn't resist. But her dancing is very unrefined and not quite sensual enough to be at the level of the others.
She loathes the fact that she'll have to lower herself to that, but is willing to do whatever it takes to come out on top.
In doing this, she quits her waitress position, changes her appearance and goes to her next audition under a new name... supposing I go through with that, that's where the name change comes in. Carmen was Amber's previous identity.

When she becomes part of the organization, she's thrilled when it seems like Ruby has lost her edge and her material easily trumps hers. Something that continues to go on until the night of the "Heavy Metal Lover" performance... which reopens old wounds and leads to a mental breakdown... potentially.

That'd be an interesting scene to write, but it most likely won't make it into the actual novel because it's an internal thing... the only way it'd work is if the story were told in multiple first person POVs.

Amber's motivation is ever changing. She has that vendetta against Ruby that's always kinda there in the back of her mind, but most of the time, she feels she's superior.

Then while bringing Alejandro back into the picture as a potential source of conflict... Amber discovers Talia is the girl he's interested in and that she's at the center of the organization, the dancing was her idea. For these reasons, she plans to take Talia down so she can control how the business runs... she really wants the focus to be on skill and look of the dance rather than the "sex on a stick" image.

But she plays along with the act for as long as it takes to figure out how to bring it down... an inside job. Hmm... that seems a little extreme... putting herself through all the things the girls go through in their business to prove a point...
i still have a lot of kinks to work out.

In the third act after the performance of "Alejandro" where Talia stages a proverbial "break-up" with him, she and Amber have it out...
They exchange a few words and Talia finally says that she knows that Amber was behind what happened, not Alejandro, and she asks why she did it.
She consents to explain herself because Talia threatens to fire her, not only for what she got Emilia into, but because she broke the code of conduct... the girls have to get along and more importantly, there can't be that kind of bad blood between them.
Amber confesses everything, even her previous identity. While she has every right to be mad at her, Talia reassures her that she understands where she came from, goes into her own back story.

The most sacred piece of the code of conduct is the rule that the girls will bring up their pasts at their own discretion... there's no pressure to explain anything or volunteer any personal information. So in most cases, the girls don't know each other's back stories unless they open up about it on their own.

In addition to her ongoing romance with Juan Paulo, this conversation opens a dialogue between the girls and Talia asks them if they still want to go the whole 9 yards about their business... the outcome of that meeting, I'm not quite sure yet, but I don't think Talia will be part of it no matter what the future holds.

What I'd ultimately like to do is try to write a 20 page back story for all the girls... get to know them as well as I can before start the actual story. But first, I'm going to devote a page in my spiral notebook to each of them, their songs, adjectives to describe, their varying styles.

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