I need some input. I’m working on a manuscript that has gone through an editor at a publishing company. She pointed out some things that I’m going to fix (my heroine was too perfect, and I guess I have to admit she’s right), but one thing she mentioned was my hero’s career.
When the story starts he’s back at ranch in South Dakota which his young daughter inherited from her maternal grandfather. Ranching is something my hero loves, he grew up on a ranch but spent about fifteen years away from it.
That’s all well and good, but while he was away from South Dakota, his late wife was a reporter who covered events all over the world so he more or less lived abroad with her. I needed a career for him, something that he could do while moving from place to place, taking care of his daughter while his wife was doing her job. I decided to make him an author-suspense thriller type. He was good at it but after his wife passed and he and his daughter returned to South Dakota to take over the cattle ranch he kind of put the writing aside.
The editor didn’t like that. Didn’t like that he had just dropped his career as an best selling author to go back to his roots.
I disagree. His first love is the land. Why is it such an odd thing for him to put aside his writing career (which he would concentrate on in the winter months)?
And what other careers could a man who lived mostly out of hotels do? I don’t want him being a “househusband” or a stay at home parent. Day trader?
Should a writing career be off limits for a character? What careers should a writer stay away from when it comes to her characters. Yes, I hear that movie stars and rock stars (country stars etc etc etc) aren’t popular.
I’d love some input from other writers and readers alike. Until then I think I’ll stick to my guns and make my hero a best selling author who’d rather be a rancher.