Influence my next book

(NOTE: This competition has now closed)

Would you like to help create a character for my next book?

What began as a simple pick-a-name “contest” quickly grew into full-fledged character development. For “The Reporter and a Hurricane,” I requested name suggestions for an electricity lineman. The winning contribution was Virgil “Moose” MacDuff, but only his wife and mother ever used his first name. He got the MacDuff tartan tattooed across his entire right forearm and he favored fried foods, pecan pie and cheap beer.

The bar was set high, but future contests produced equally worthy contributions: Sandra “Sunny” DelSol for “The Reporter and the Penguin”; and Gene Teller for “The Reporter and the Rose.”

I’m fairly early in the writing of the next book but have already identified the character for the competition. It can be male or female. He or she is the owner or co-owner of a sporting goods / outdoors store in Oldport, named OldSport Outdoors. About 42 years old, the person is also an avid hiker.

There you go, plenty of room for you to work. Craft a name, a bit of a background story and/or traits and characteristics. Submit your nomination by clicking “Leave a comment” above or … best of all … like the Facebook page of my main character, reporter JP Weiscarver, and message him (I mean, me) with your contribution.

So, what’s in it for you? How about a personalized, autographed copy of the book when it comes out? Hard to beat that for a few minutes of creative typing.

Get on it now because the first entries are already in. I’ve not yet set a deadline; there’s no big hurry, but I’ll give a 24-hour warning via Facebook in a few days and then determine the winner.

I would love to hear your thoughts.

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