Southern belle with a story to tell. Refreshing iced tea served after literary punches thrown.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Inspiration From Everywhere!

How I love the quiet of a Sunday morning.  No hustle and bustle of a Monday, and my hubs and son are still asleep.  The only souls stirring about are myself and Wyatt (the maniacally cute Havanese who likes to squeak toys loudly when I write).
So cute..and yet so devious.
One reason I adore Sundays so much is because of all of the time to write.  It's a lazy day, and for now, it's all for me, although that will change in probably an hour or so.

Going to put the coffee on now and while I'm waiting, I'm going to think about what has been inspiring me to write as of late.  Some are tangible objects, others not, but it's fun to think about what gets our creative juices flowing isn't it?

Right now I'm in midst of revisions on my manuscript, THE DEATH BROKERS, and wanting to wade out of the murky middle, but I'm happy to take my own sweet time because revisions must be lovingly done.  Good revisions are what makes a good book into a great book, and as my grandmother always told me, "Rome wasn't built in a day."  If you're a new writer, do not lull yourself into the dreamy haze that your actual writing is over during revisions, oh no my friend!  During revisions you are tweaking and changing the nasty bits and turning them into something better than they were before.  There IS much more writing Virginia, after first draft is completed.

I have a secret confession to you..during this tedious process, it became clear yet another character had to become a sacrificial lamb for THE DEATH BROKERS.  I had not planned on this during first draft, but it had to happen.  She simply knew too much and they couldn't let that happen, thus the manuscript required a slight change.   Yours will too, and you'll need inspiration during this most important time.

A few days ago, my 13 year old son left his airsoft pistol out on the desk near me.  It's not loaded nor is it dangerous, but having such a realistic item nearby when I'm writing my thriller definitely helps me write about the dark side.  Just looking at it lying there makes me think about how one of the hit men carries his gun.  Because of that silly airsoft pistol, two chapters came alive for me during more revision, and again, better and more sinister changes came as a result.  I'm going to let it sit there until revisions are completed.

My son's Crossman airsoft pistol.  Looks real doesn't it?  Makes for great inspiration.

Television sometimes brings inspiration my way and I can always count on watching "American Greed" in bringing me wonderfully devious ideas.  The cases are unique and although none are quite like what I've written about, there are certain common denominators in every one of them which are present in my manuscript and they would be:  deceit, arrogance, the Big Mistake, and a super-inflated ego.  

The Big Mistake is what I refer to as the tipping point in many of the cases, where the criminal slips and shows their hand.  Sometimes it is intentional and they either directly wish to get caught or subconsciously they want to be stopped.    

As a woman who also studied quite a bit of psychology as an undergrad, I can tell you it's amazing to watch that show because the most obvious common thread which stands out to me among the criminals highlighted  on every episode is the inflated ego.  Some of them I'd bet might actually cross over into cases of either narcissistic personality disorder or psychopathy (sociopaths). 

Some of my best ideas however, come from clearing my head and going for a run or brisk walk.  I alternate between listening to music and just listening to the sounds of nature.  The feeling of your body being in rhythm as you walk, frees your mind and opens it up to new ideas and it's also pretty darn good for you to do, health-wise.

Other times I get my ideas from a certain necklace I wear.  Some might call it a talisman of sorts, but it's actually something I wear in memory of  my grandmother, someone I loved very much (her maiden name was Hart).  It's a diamond heart necklace and on one side are clear white diamonds, and on the other inky black diamonds.  To me, the two sides of the heart represents our human duality, and both the light and dark places of the soul.  My grandmother was the most beautiful and loving individual I've ever met, yet during her last days on this earth, I saw one relative around her bring forth the darkest of human nature and it's why I bought this heart.  To remind me of the beauty of her soul, and also to remind me of the darkness which exists within others and to be wise and discerning.

This is not my pendant, but it is similar.  You get the idea.
Sometimes when I'm writing, I'll flip it to one side depending on the nature of the character I'm writing about.  If you see me writing and I'm wearing the necklace and it's flipped over to the side with the black diamonds?  You can be sure I'm writing something dark, or dangerous.

What unusual things inspire you to write?  It's a lazy Sunday and today would be a wonderful time to explore your own sources of creativity.

The coffee is ready and time for a warm, comforting cup.  Coffee sometimes gives me that jump start and the smell of Angel's Kiss could inspire even the coldest of hearts.  Yes dear readers, sometimes I do drink coffee rather than tea, but it's relegated to mornings and as of late, this is what my java fantasies are made of:
Jamaican Me Crazy & Angel's Kiss are heavenly!

See you later, It's time to revise!

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