In the comment section of Thoughts on Storytelling and the Castle Season 4 Finale, Julie asked “Do you have some Castle fanfic hiding somewhere?” Owing to the number of projects I have ongoing, I deferred on writing any Castle fanfic. Trouble was, the Muses had other ideas.
As sometimes happens, a creative thread just nags at me — sort of like a song that gets stuck in your head. For me, it’s scenes and story/character arcs and a myriad other things. While I enjoy these journeys of imagination (it’s like getting cable for free), it can be sort of distracting when I’m trying to be creative with something else. I find myself in need of the mental equivalent of a palate cleanser.
I finally gave in and wrote up a few of these scenes that have been the most persistent. It’s barely 30% of an episode (just 16 pages), but covers the the main distraction of the Rick/Kate season four finale follow-up. I’ll post some thoughts after the pages. Note, that after each sequence there’s a page break where the rest of the plot would happen.
From my experience with The Connor Wars, I know that some shippers want a no-holds-barred, just-barely-ready for prime-time sex scene. Well, that’s not how I roll. I find those to be tedious. In fact, I often find myself asking, “Are we done yet? Can we get on with the story?” As a result, I tend to write around the sex scenes…or at lest a little to the side. And that’s where we start.
Given that the unwritten “B” plot would be heavy with Mr. Smith and lives in danger and whatnot, I wanted this initial sequence, especially, to be more in the tradition of lighthearted Castle. Even so, there were things that needed to be said. Serious things.
A lot of writers like stringing along audiences/readers with doubt. I’m not one of those. I like letting the audience know when they can be on firm ground with characters. Given all the shaky soil between Rick and Kate in the first four seasons, I thought it was time to give the audience a break.
The major story shift I threw in was having Kate become a detective. (FYI Rick can’t, because under NY state rules, he doesn’t qualify…though if he works full-time for Kate for three years, he could. Yes, even for short fanfic I do relevant research.) I thought it would be a something that allows Rick and Kate more freedom while still also keeping them in a procedural milieu. Also, I have them maintain ties to the department so we never lose that, either.
It’s clear, by the end, that Rick isn’t holding back. He’s jumping in with both feet with trusting Kate. With as many times as they’ve saved each other’s lives, it only seems logical. It’s nice that she gave him the same respect. This also allows the writer to not screw things up too much by having them live together right away. They get to maintain their distance while also having an open door policy. I also wanted to tie in The Old Haunt.
The elephant in the room is the other 40 pages that I didn’t write. While I considered writing a full episode, the fact was that it would require a lengthy time commitment to plot out an entire season so that I knew what the behind-the-scenes machinations were that were against Kate (and by extension, Rick). I’m not the sort of writer who will blindly figure this stuff out as he goes. That would be irresponsible of me and disrespectful to the audience and story. Something this major needs to be mapped out so the breadcrumbs can be dropped over a period of time.
So, I hope you liked these little random snippets. I know my mind isn’t racing as much as it was before, and that was the selfish purpose for this exercise. Now I can focus better on other things.