1 + 1 = . . . 1?

My novel has two main characters that serve two distinct and necessary purposes in the plot. One is a platonic friend to my main character; the other is a romantic interest. But after reading the bulk of the manuscript, my husband suggested I merge the two characters. I can’t do that! They are two different people! Obviously my character development is lacking.  Good. I have an easily identifiable problem. But how do I tackle it? It seems daunting, to say the least.

During my sleepless night (ice knocking on the hull, baby knocking on my stomach), I visualized my two characters.  I visualized two actors playing the roles of the characters in a movie. I watched them come to life.  Of course I remember doing this, but since I was half asleep (and grumpy from lack of sleep), I don’t really remember what I imagined. But, daydreaming! What a great tool.  I’m hoping I can daydream my way from 1 + 1 = 1 to 1 + 1 = 2.

2 names. 2 characters. 2 roles.

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