As mentioned in part one Artie was planned and plotted from near the beginning.

Then there’s Beatrice who came in on a joke and wound up working very well for me.

I needed a lawyer to argue for Rick and I wanted Rick to have conflict with that lawyer. Ex-girlfriend seemed like a good fit, but I needed one who had a shot at taking down Artie in the courtroom and most guys I know with sisters tend not to win arguments with them and I already knew Artie had three sisters. Which is obsessive and ridiculous, I admit that. I not only had thought through all of Artie’s life and relationships in preparation for his first appearance but I knew most of his family. He has two older, domineering sisters and a younger sister who was his friend but more clever than him. This all ties back in to how he relates to women and how he stalked and tried to manipulate Tina into loving him.

I know this is a ridiculous amount of detail and thought. I know I’m an obsessive compulsive, anal-retentive freak when it comes to this kind of thing. I’m okay with it. Mainly because I probably can’t change.

From out of Artie’s three sisters would naturally come my lawyer and new character. The youngest seemed like the best fit, her appearance based on her mom, but skinnier and younger and as to her name; that all came from the joke in the panel in which she first appeared. Bea/Beatrice. And for a throwaway character who was only supposed to come in, mock Rick, make Rick crawl, and then kick Artie’s ass and get Rick his kids back she ended up being a lot of fun to work with. She’ll be back.

The problem with her originally for me was that she was too much like Rick, had too much the same voice, the same thought pattern and it was a bit difficult writing her in such a way as to differentiate between them. That problem ended up being a solution to the problem of why they never made it as a couple. Imagine two Rick Dodges, feeding each other straight lines, mocking everyone they meet, constantly trying to one up each other, devolving further and further into nastiness. Rick can get away with it for a few reasons; one he has a smile on his face and tries to bring people in on the joke, and two; he’s a guy. A guy who is nasty is allowed much more latitude than a girl who is nasty, not saying that’s right, I’m just saying that happens.

Rick also tends to be much smarter and more aware than I usually let on. He knows how he is, and he isn’t willing to change, but he is willing to surround himself with people who call him on his crap and keep him a bit in line. Bea wasn’t that kind of person and Tina was.