Hi guys. It’s blog chain time again. Shaun started us off this week with this topic: 

From where do you get your inspiration for stories?  Give me the oddest, coolest, things that have inspired you.

Before I answer it, I need to plug Shaun’s newly released book, The Deathday Letter . SO. FREAKING.GOOD. You seriously need to go buy it RIGHT NOW!!!

Okay, back to the topic. Inspiration.

I find inspiration all around me everyday. A snip of a conversation, the way two people look at each other, a strange pink-haired woman on a bus to Disneyland – everywhere. The key for me is to get out and actually live life so I can see that inspiration.

I think it is far to easy to get caught up in the writer-edit-rewrite-revise-market-hideonthecomputerallday rat race and forget to LIVE!!!

That being said, let’s look at a few of the things that have inspired my stories.

My first two stories were originally inspired by a dream I had. I was getting ready for a trip with my dad and a bizarre convo he and I had spurred this very vivid dream. In the dream, I was hiking up a steep cliff. I remember the rain pouring down around me. It was so visceral – even now I can recall the smell of the driving rain, and the way it felt when it hit my skin. More importantly, I remember this feeling of terror I had.

In the dream, I was driven to climb this mountain and jump off the cliff. The feeling of terror at the idea of jumping off was almost too much to handle. But still, I was compelled to do it.

That scene became part of the climax in both books…and something that still stays with me.

I have shelved the books for now, but I know that I will eventually rewrite them

My other novel, A BEAUTIFUL MESS, came to me during NaNoWriMo.  As is typical for me, I wrote most of that NaNo at Starbucks. While there I watched the baristas, making good friends with most of them. Their conversations shaped the main characters in A BEAUTIFUL MESS. But it was a painting of a fallen angel that set that story loose.

Over time, the story reshaped based on different things around me, until it was finally ready to be born seven months after it was first inspired.

My current WiP, PERFECT SCARS was inspired by the lyrics of the song by Evanescence,called Hello. I wanted to explore what happens in the space of time between dying and death…and so, the story was born.

Today I am leaving for Maui. I have been toying with an idea for a YA novel based on some of the legends of HI. I’m sure the islands will provide much inspiration.

To see how others in the chain get their inspiration, check out Michelle H.’s post from Saturday, and Margie’s post tomorrow.

Where do you find your inspiration???


24 thoughts on “Blog Chain Post: The Inspiration of Real Life

  1. I agree it’s far too easy to get so caught up in everyday things (like your job, taking care of your family and kids) that you really don’t get to live. Hope you get a lot of living done on your trip!

  2. Thanks for sharing your stories of inspiration. One of my novels was inspired by many summers of sea kayaking in Prince William Sound.

    Have a great time in Hawaii!!

  3. Thanks guys!
    Laura – yeah, we go alot…my parents live there. This trip, hiking through the rain forests in search of inspiration

    Vicki – absolutely!

    Sandra – Lots of living to be done.
    Michelle M – one day we go together, okay?
    Rebecca – I hope you do too…really really hope
    Michelle Sussman – thanks. I love the islands
    Paul – sea kayaking on the sound is amazing I bet! Definitely my idea of LIVING!!!

  4. Music is probably the first. As a former dancer, nothing moves me like my ear.

    The other biggy for me is probably my kids. Living with four kids ranging from the YA age to the elementary age has been immensity helpful yet frustrating at the same time. Having four lends me less time to devote to my writing. But…having four gives me great material that is easily tweaked into unique scenes.

    Thanks for sharing. Great post.

  5. I so agree with you…and suggest that its easy to get caught up in the daily grind of life, and miss out on living. What motivates me the most are the things that I am passionate about in life.

    thank you for the reminder!

  6. You’re making me blush! But I’m so glad you liked it 🙂

    You are so right on. If you never get out and experience life then you’re missing out on all kinds of opportunities. Really brilliant!

  7. Wow, I like the cliff idea. That is really interesting. I’m so jealous of you going to Hawaii though. My parents went a while back and they loved it. I hope you really have a good time. Be careful, have fun, and come back safely.

  8. I’m with you ~ inspiration is everywhere. From dreams to contests that literally made me just go looking for an idea, to songs on the radio ~ inspiration is everywhere. And you can bet you’ll find a TON of it in HI! Enjoy your trip!

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