Dear Characters: An Apology Letter to Everyone I Ever Created

Dear Characters,

I know we’ve had our differences. I know I’ve hurt you. I know I’ve let you down. I know, during some parts of your life, I’ve killed the ones you loved.

For some of you, I’ve raised you to be weak. I’ve watched you suffer, watched your minds deteriorate, watched your hurt turn into wicked schemes.

Perhaps I should have been there for you.

But I wasn’t.

I guess I just didn’t care enough.

For others, I have not been so negligent. I have given you luxuries and happiness, and even if I sent a blow your way, I always worked things out for you in the end.

I know one shouldn’t pick favorites, but all along, you were the ones I wrote for.

Perhaps, by now, you’ve recognized the pattern—the painful, twisting plot that soon straightens into a happily-ever-after ending. Maybe you’ve come to expect it, to rest assured that everything will always finish your way.

But you never know. Take our relationship cautiously, faithlessly, because at any given moment I may forsake you.

I may destroy your world.

I may plunge you into madness.

I may bury you on Boot Hill, drown you under cold waves, or kidnap you without a trace. And who knows if you’ll ever be found?

Crazy, but sometimes I feel that I know you. I feel close to you, warm to you, endeared to you—as if our relationship were something to be treasured.

But then I must remember reality. This is not real. This cannot last. You can no more trust me than I can trust you.

So in the end, dear characters, we must go our separate ways. You must play the part I tell you to. You must bear it boldly and must never hate me. You must try to understand that I am only doing as I must.

And me?

Well, I will write while being in love with you, while hating you, while testing you, and while rescuing you.

This is the pattern, the way it must be, the reality—and not even I can change this for you.

So if nothing else, let me say this.

I am sorry.

And I shall love you all forever.

With great affection and devotion,

Your Author

Hannah Linder is a Christian fiction author, graphic designer, and photographer.

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