First of all, if anyone hasn't seen this, here's Abyss and Apex's review of my novel:
Abyss and Apex 3Q Book Reviews
I'm quite pleased, and grateful they took the time to review it.
On to my thoughts for the week, I've recently discovered (or rediscovered) another tendency of mine in character creations: I like to explore issues of identity, what defines it, and what happens when you learn that part of your identity wasn't what you thought it was. (This does, in fact, tie very strongly into Flow.) I write a lot of characters who are outsiders in their own societies; to a certain extent, I suppose you could argue that most heroes need to be, but it's often used more as an excuse / impetus to adventure than a driving part of the plot.
But I've always been fascinated with circumstances that alter identity and that moment of self-realization, whether it be coming-of-age (Flow again) or something else. Ioweyn in Who Wants To Be A Hero? is a goddess of change itself, which means that the faces she presents throughout are varied both physically and in the way she acts - but is that real change, or is it pretense over a static identity? Isn't there a paradox in here somewhere? And this in what is intended to be a lighthearted comedy ... Vri from Bird Out Of Water (available in Trespass) is half merman, half harpy, and focused on becoming something better ... or is it?
When something forcibly alters your consciousness, how do you deal with it? Are there circumstances in which you aren't "you" any more? If your origins are revealed to be something different - your parents, your early childhood circumstances - does that change anything? And what if you have a terrible past, but you no longer remember it ...
This last is an idea I started to work on a very long time ago in a fandom setting, but I never got to implement more than fleetingly, because the community was on its way out. Now I'm taking another stab at it in another shared-world environment, and hoping to do it right. We'll see.