How my books ‘happen’…It’s an odd thing; letting people into your mind. I’m not very good at it. It’s kind of like when you get the giggles and you have NO idea why you are laughing like a banshee on crack. I write and write and write but ask me to explain it and I suddenly draw a blank. I have a lot in common with Stasia - the heroine of the Daughters of the Sea Trilogy - her insecurities, her fears, her strengths, and her independence. But as I’ve been writing, I’ve come to realize each character matches a part of ‘me’. I have a lot of sides and I seem to polarize them in order to personify each. Don’t worry - it’s not as exhausting as it sounds. But it does make it easier to bring each individual character to life and give them depth. At the moment Nadia is my favorite character to write. I get to let my mind really wander and think differently - it’s actually been a lot of fun! In order to help people understand how I come up with the stories and characters, I’ve made a list of the major steps that tend to happen while I’m writing a book:
- The 4am Idea Fairy: Almost every night at 4:00am, I wake up with my mind racing. The scene or plot I’m working on comes to life and takes off - leaving me helpless to do anything but watch it play out and then frantically write it all down so I don’t forget it by morning.
- My husband: Sounds cheesy right? But seriously, the guy is a riot - he comes up with the most random sayings and I’ve incorporated several into my books - usually said by Finn.
- MacGyver Ideas: Think of this as making a piece of art out of a pile of random items. As I’m writing the storyline I throw in a symbol or a person or an object that will mean something later in the book, but I have no idea what yet. I keep all of these random ideas in the back of my mind and as I’m writing the rest of the book they just seem to ‘fit’ places. I have no clue how this works, but as long as it does I’m going to keep doing it…
- How does it make me feel: As I’m writing, my main objective is to elicit a specific emotion/reaction from the reader. If I re-read it and don’t get that exact emotion, I scrap it and start over. That’s the perfectionist in meJ
- Red Bull. Red Bull. And more Red Bull.