E is for Emma
I know, that's a weird way to start a post, but since this book is in-progress, there are a bunch of decisions that I'm still working out. In this case, I haven't decided if I want this character to be Emma, in which case she'd be the daughter of a British Civil Service official, living with her family in India around 1890; or if I want her to be Padma, in which case she'd be an Indian-American corporate lawyer living in New York City in the very near future, around 2050. I do know that the other soul, no matter when this takes place, is going to be an incarnation of the Hindu goddess Durga. That will be the fun part :)
These are the problems you encounter when you're writing a book about the different lifetimes of two souls - too many damn possibilities.
Really, though, I haven't been thinking about this in terms of characters: I've been trying to figure out if I'd rather tackle researching the British rule of India in the 1890s, and deal with all of the subsequent racial tensions and cultural questions and historical accuracy problems, or if I'd rather tackle writing science fiction. See, if the Emma (we'll call her that for now) character lives in NYC in the near future, then I'll be forced to bump another lifetime further into the future.
Every sci-fi writer reading this right now is probably thinking, "SO?! Why the heck wouldn't you do that??" The answer, alas, is that while I read science fiction, I've never written it. Not even a little short story here or there. And...the science part scares the you-know-what outta me. So this one is still up in the air for now.