Diego was the name of a father at my mom’s daycare. The daycare required one parent to volunteer one day a week. I remember him because he was the only dad that year. I assumed that was because he was a stay at home dad. Nope- he worked too and was volunteering on his days off so his wife didn’t have to. I know that men are given too much credit for wanting to be a part of their child’s lives but in a sea of stay at home moms, a dad was a memorable sight. (And his daughter was an absolute cutie-pie.)
In earlier drafts of Dakota Son, that’s all Diego was, a kind devoted father. But that was before I found my final ending. As my manuscript reached 200k words the character of Diego evolved into a Benjamin Bratt inspired bad-ass.
In fact, in an early draft, there was one scene so bad-ass I felt it warranted becoming one of my first blog posts on my creative writing site-
Long story short, Diego took a baseball bat to the head of his daughter’s rapist boyfriend. And then when said boyfriend’s rich family gets Diego’s wife to sign a plea agreement he takes a crowbar to the front gate of the a-hole’s estate.
That part had to be cut for the final novel since it was told entirely in flashback, but the idea still came across, as stated in-
US Review- review!
“Equally memorable is Ramsey’s portrait of Diego, which suggests a man as kindhearted as he is menacing.”
That was always my goal, to create someone who is more then what he seems. Diego’s military history was inspired by the people I met while in the Air Force. Men and women who volunteered to deploy to places like Africa and Eastern Europe to fight the conflicts that hardly ever make the news and will never be fully resolved.
Which is why in addition to his severe physical injuries he suffers from PTSD which causes him to question who he is and what he truly desires.
An idea that I explored further in the multi-chapter short-
Rain Down Temple
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