You do have to be crazy…

Valcardone
Hi, Jo here. Perhaps those cherubs are aspects of my muse. Sometimes roses, sometimes…. not.*G*

I had such plans. A new CBK picture. A nifty blog post…

But you know the writing life. Stuff happens! One thing is that today (Saturday) is my RWA chapter’s Valentine’s Day Brunch, when we congratulate each other on our achievements and encourage each other as we head into the future, and I ended up with a few things to do with that.

One is a gambling game that I’ve morphed into a “writing life” game. Can’t really get into the details here, but unlike writing, no skill is involved. Very like publishing, a whole lot of the game is luck and chance. Good things happen — let’s say the book gets talked about by the TV personality of the moment. Bad things happen, like lines closing, editors leaving, and train wrecks destroying the whole print run. (Yes, that actually happened one. I know one of Suzanne Brockman’s books ceased to exist that way.) Is it surprising that we writers are a bit wacky? Truly, you have to be crazy to work here.

And making up realities and writing them down is pretty crazy, too. So I thought I’d say a bit about the process of coming up with the book I’m writing now, which is currently only about 10,000 words old. (The France/nun one I mentioned last week in relation to research.)

Books come to me in many different ways, but this was a bit of a gift book — that is, the idea and opening scene just flashed into my mind. Who knows where these things come from? I call it a gift from the muse. Like most gifts of the muse, however, “some assembly is required.” Okay, it comes in a scattering of strange bits and pieces with no instructions at all. Not even diagrams.

What I got was a young, gorgeous, laid-back Regency libertine — which pretty well means “free spirited, doesn’t it? — who encounters a plain and sober lady who is desperate to get from point A to point B. They have a charming — okay, brilliant — conversation, full of wit and sexy innuendo. Unfortunately my imagination does not have a record button, so that conversation is gone forever.

She’s a governess, perhaps, fed up with her employer. Or on the run. Or an heiress trying to escape a tyrannical guardian. I let this concept roll around in my head for a while and kept bumping against a wall of some sort. Bear in mind that I was actually finishing Lady Beware at the time. I sent off LB, tried to get something of this new story down and couldn’t. Hmmm. What’s the problem here?

I worked on her backstory, but it was becoming incredibly complicated, with bizarre wills and eccentric do-gooder guardians. And whenever I tried to imagine these two off on a road trip that goes from bad to worse, it wouldn’t come alive.

Then I realized that the problem is. It’s not Regency, it’s Georgian. The reasonably safe and well-regulated Regency world won’t work for the sort of wild ride I envision these two having. It’s going to be at least partly a road book, and Regency roads were too well-maintained, too fast, and too busy. Anyway, Georgian rakes are just much more yummy.

So I tried again, but it was still sulking. I needed to know where they were and where she needed to go. North is good. Wilder in the north. Nope, that’s not it. West to east is good. Going over the Pennines is always tricky. Nope, not that either. So I wandered into the kitchen for more coffee, said to my husband, “I need to know where these people ARE.” He was heading to his office with his coffee, and simply said, “France.”

I asked him later why he’d said that, and he had no idea. But of course, they’re in France! Even rougher roads, and a despotic system that makes mayhem and tangling with the law much more hazardous.

And then the heroine turned into a nun.

And that’s where they are now, somewhere about 10 miles out of Abbeville, heading for Boulogne. Though, of course, everything is still subject to change.

If you’re a reader, does it surprise you that books can come to life in such peculiar ways? Even if you don’t write, do you get imaginary people acting out movies in your head? Does the idea scare you?

If you’re a writer, does this sort of thing happen to you? Do you shoot such chaos on sight or do you enjoy it?

Oh, and by the way. Dragon Lovers will be out in only a few weeks and we four authors have an offer for you. We’ve created a reminder list. This means that you’ll get one, and only one message to tell you when the book is out — so you can rush out and buy, of course. As an incentive, on the 20th February, we’ll draw one name from the list to win a lovely silver and silk dragon pendant. Here it is. C1788a_jos_dragon_pendant_for_web
Then sign up on our web site.
http://www.fourinspired.com

If you’re already signed up to a reminder list with one of the authors, don’t worry. Those names will be merged in for the draw.Dlsmall

But come back here and talk about the insanity of creation.

Jo 🙂

44 thoughts on “You do have to be crazy…”

  1. I always find it strange, this creative process. I’m not a writer and never will be, so this world of creation based on thoughtful deliberation interspersed with leaps of logic baffles me.
    But hey, now that I mention it, it sounds a lot like House’s diagnostic progress through each episode.

    Reply
  2. I always find it strange, this creative process. I’m not a writer and never will be, so this world of creation based on thoughtful deliberation interspersed with leaps of logic baffles me.
    But hey, now that I mention it, it sounds a lot like House’s diagnostic progress through each episode.

    Reply
  3. I always find it strange, this creative process. I’m not a writer and never will be, so this world of creation based on thoughtful deliberation interspersed with leaps of logic baffles me.
    But hey, now that I mention it, it sounds a lot like House’s diagnostic progress through each episode.

    Reply
  4. I always find it strange, this creative process. I’m not a writer and never will be, so this world of creation based on thoughtful deliberation interspersed with leaps of logic baffles me.
    But hey, now that I mention it, it sounds a lot like House’s diagnostic progress through each episode.

    Reply
  5. I loved this post, and you must love your husband!
    I so admire writers who have everything neatly laid out before they write…you know, the ten page outline with Roman numerals and everything. I’m not one of those people. In fact I hardly ever know what I’m going to write until my fingers hit the keyboard. And when I go back and re-read, I have no recollection of being so brilliant, LOL. Things seem to come to me in small increments, and the characters definitely take me places I never imagined.
    I am anxious to read how you will transform your nun—the ultimate makeover story!

    Reply
  6. I loved this post, and you must love your husband!
    I so admire writers who have everything neatly laid out before they write…you know, the ten page outline with Roman numerals and everything. I’m not one of those people. In fact I hardly ever know what I’m going to write until my fingers hit the keyboard. And when I go back and re-read, I have no recollection of being so brilliant, LOL. Things seem to come to me in small increments, and the characters definitely take me places I never imagined.
    I am anxious to read how you will transform your nun—the ultimate makeover story!

    Reply
  7. I loved this post, and you must love your husband!
    I so admire writers who have everything neatly laid out before they write…you know, the ten page outline with Roman numerals and everything. I’m not one of those people. In fact I hardly ever know what I’m going to write until my fingers hit the keyboard. And when I go back and re-read, I have no recollection of being so brilliant, LOL. Things seem to come to me in small increments, and the characters definitely take me places I never imagined.
    I am anxious to read how you will transform your nun—the ultimate makeover story!

    Reply
  8. I loved this post, and you must love your husband!
    I so admire writers who have everything neatly laid out before they write…you know, the ten page outline with Roman numerals and everything. I’m not one of those people. In fact I hardly ever know what I’m going to write until my fingers hit the keyboard. And when I go back and re-read, I have no recollection of being so brilliant, LOL. Things seem to come to me in small increments, and the characters definitely take me places I never imagined.
    I am anxious to read how you will transform your nun—the ultimate makeover story!

    Reply
  9. A lot of creative people are intuitive leapers, I think. Not all. But our brains go hopscotching through available brain debris and somehow manage to make a story raft. The craft part is whether that raft stays a raft or becomes a sleek little yacht or luxury liner or zippy speedboat… So far, mine’s still a rickity raft :).
    I have so many ideas, and they’ve come from so many places. I’m keeping files of ideas. The story I’m working on now has definitely grown organically. I’m a murderous sort in my creative life, so it started with an image of a beautiful red-haired woman lying dead on a bed of brilliant fall leaves, her hair blending into their color. But why? How? Who? I didn’t want a MacGuffin, so how could the bed of fall leaves be *necessary*, not just interesting imagery? I had to develop a story where that worked (I did. I think.). And so it goes.
    One of my most interesting (to me) ideas came in a dream, a very gothic image of twin sisters, one dead and the other found lying insensible across her body. What in the world happened there? It’s exciting (and hard work) to figure it out. But you can see why I can’t be a straight romance writer. People keep dying.
    There’s actually an annual conference on Creativity & Madness, and a book about the nexus between the two for some famous artists, including writers: http://www.aimed.com/book.html. Intriguing. I know Stephen King and other writers who have battled addictions have said they feared the muse would desert them if they didn’t have the barriers to their imaginations weakened by various substances. Fortunately, those who’ve stopped the substance abuse have found it didn’t kill the creativity. But it speaks to the fact that artists of whatever stripe need the ability to unmoor and roam freely amongst those brain debris.

    Reply
  10. A lot of creative people are intuitive leapers, I think. Not all. But our brains go hopscotching through available brain debris and somehow manage to make a story raft. The craft part is whether that raft stays a raft or becomes a sleek little yacht or luxury liner or zippy speedboat… So far, mine’s still a rickity raft :).
    I have so many ideas, and they’ve come from so many places. I’m keeping files of ideas. The story I’m working on now has definitely grown organically. I’m a murderous sort in my creative life, so it started with an image of a beautiful red-haired woman lying dead on a bed of brilliant fall leaves, her hair blending into their color. But why? How? Who? I didn’t want a MacGuffin, so how could the bed of fall leaves be *necessary*, not just interesting imagery? I had to develop a story where that worked (I did. I think.). And so it goes.
    One of my most interesting (to me) ideas came in a dream, a very gothic image of twin sisters, one dead and the other found lying insensible across her body. What in the world happened there? It’s exciting (and hard work) to figure it out. But you can see why I can’t be a straight romance writer. People keep dying.
    There’s actually an annual conference on Creativity & Madness, and a book about the nexus between the two for some famous artists, including writers: http://www.aimed.com/book.html. Intriguing. I know Stephen King and other writers who have battled addictions have said they feared the muse would desert them if they didn’t have the barriers to their imaginations weakened by various substances. Fortunately, those who’ve stopped the substance abuse have found it didn’t kill the creativity. But it speaks to the fact that artists of whatever stripe need the ability to unmoor and roam freely amongst those brain debris.

    Reply
  11. A lot of creative people are intuitive leapers, I think. Not all. But our brains go hopscotching through available brain debris and somehow manage to make a story raft. The craft part is whether that raft stays a raft or becomes a sleek little yacht or luxury liner or zippy speedboat… So far, mine’s still a rickity raft :).
    I have so many ideas, and they’ve come from so many places. I’m keeping files of ideas. The story I’m working on now has definitely grown organically. I’m a murderous sort in my creative life, so it started with an image of a beautiful red-haired woman lying dead on a bed of brilliant fall leaves, her hair blending into their color. But why? How? Who? I didn’t want a MacGuffin, so how could the bed of fall leaves be *necessary*, not just interesting imagery? I had to develop a story where that worked (I did. I think.). And so it goes.
    One of my most interesting (to me) ideas came in a dream, a very gothic image of twin sisters, one dead and the other found lying insensible across her body. What in the world happened there? It’s exciting (and hard work) to figure it out. But you can see why I can’t be a straight romance writer. People keep dying.
    There’s actually an annual conference on Creativity & Madness, and a book about the nexus between the two for some famous artists, including writers: http://www.aimed.com/book.html. Intriguing. I know Stephen King and other writers who have battled addictions have said they feared the muse would desert them if they didn’t have the barriers to their imaginations weakened by various substances. Fortunately, those who’ve stopped the substance abuse have found it didn’t kill the creativity. But it speaks to the fact that artists of whatever stripe need the ability to unmoor and roam freely amongst those brain debris.

    Reply
  12. A lot of creative people are intuitive leapers, I think. Not all. But our brains go hopscotching through available brain debris and somehow manage to make a story raft. The craft part is whether that raft stays a raft or becomes a sleek little yacht or luxury liner or zippy speedboat… So far, mine’s still a rickity raft :).
    I have so many ideas, and they’ve come from so many places. I’m keeping files of ideas. The story I’m working on now has definitely grown organically. I’m a murderous sort in my creative life, so it started with an image of a beautiful red-haired woman lying dead on a bed of brilliant fall leaves, her hair blending into their color. But why? How? Who? I didn’t want a MacGuffin, so how could the bed of fall leaves be *necessary*, not just interesting imagery? I had to develop a story where that worked (I did. I think.). And so it goes.
    One of my most interesting (to me) ideas came in a dream, a very gothic image of twin sisters, one dead and the other found lying insensible across her body. What in the world happened there? It’s exciting (and hard work) to figure it out. But you can see why I can’t be a straight romance writer. People keep dying.
    There’s actually an annual conference on Creativity & Madness, and a book about the nexus between the two for some famous artists, including writers: http://www.aimed.com/book.html. Intriguing. I know Stephen King and other writers who have battled addictions have said they feared the muse would desert them if they didn’t have the barriers to their imaginations weakened by various substances. Fortunately, those who’ve stopped the substance abuse have found it didn’t kill the creativity. But it speaks to the fact that artists of whatever stripe need the ability to unmoor and roam freely amongst those brain debris.

    Reply
  13. This is very funny that you are writing about this today. Just yesterday on teh drive home from work I was listening to Loreena Mckennit (Anachie Gordon) and thinking how that could be the inspiration for a book. From there I pondered just where writers do get their inspiration.
    Now for some reason, I’m liking the sound of this book, and thinking how it reminds me of “Two Mules for Sister Sarah” – perhaps it is all due to the nun (who isn’t really a nun?)

    Reply
  14. This is very funny that you are writing about this today. Just yesterday on teh drive home from work I was listening to Loreena Mckennit (Anachie Gordon) and thinking how that could be the inspiration for a book. From there I pondered just where writers do get their inspiration.
    Now for some reason, I’m liking the sound of this book, and thinking how it reminds me of “Two Mules for Sister Sarah” – perhaps it is all due to the nun (who isn’t really a nun?)

    Reply
  15. This is very funny that you are writing about this today. Just yesterday on teh drive home from work I was listening to Loreena Mckennit (Anachie Gordon) and thinking how that could be the inspiration for a book. From there I pondered just where writers do get their inspiration.
    Now for some reason, I’m liking the sound of this book, and thinking how it reminds me of “Two Mules for Sister Sarah” – perhaps it is all due to the nun (who isn’t really a nun?)

    Reply
  16. This is very funny that you are writing about this today. Just yesterday on teh drive home from work I was listening to Loreena Mckennit (Anachie Gordon) and thinking how that could be the inspiration for a book. From there I pondered just where writers do get their inspiration.
    Now for some reason, I’m liking the sound of this book, and thinking how it reminds me of “Two Mules for Sister Sarah” – perhaps it is all due to the nun (who isn’t really a nun?)

    Reply
  17. I stand amazed at writers, their creativity and the genius ability to turn ideas and such into a full-fledged story!
    I LOVE to read, and I love to write; but I don’t write stories and I don’t *see* stories, unless I’m reading. Then the movie screen in my head goes on. I have never been able to plumb the depths of creative writing, but I am in awe of those that do ~ and very, very thankful! LoL
    So, to all you who can take ideas or visions and turn them into stories & books, bless you! And may you keep creating long and often.
    Kathy

    Reply
  18. I stand amazed at writers, their creativity and the genius ability to turn ideas and such into a full-fledged story!
    I LOVE to read, and I love to write; but I don’t write stories and I don’t *see* stories, unless I’m reading. Then the movie screen in my head goes on. I have never been able to plumb the depths of creative writing, but I am in awe of those that do ~ and very, very thankful! LoL
    So, to all you who can take ideas or visions and turn them into stories & books, bless you! And may you keep creating long and often.
    Kathy

    Reply
  19. I stand amazed at writers, their creativity and the genius ability to turn ideas and such into a full-fledged story!
    I LOVE to read, and I love to write; but I don’t write stories and I don’t *see* stories, unless I’m reading. Then the movie screen in my head goes on. I have never been able to plumb the depths of creative writing, but I am in awe of those that do ~ and very, very thankful! LoL
    So, to all you who can take ideas or visions and turn them into stories & books, bless you! And may you keep creating long and often.
    Kathy

    Reply
  20. I stand amazed at writers, their creativity and the genius ability to turn ideas and such into a full-fledged story!
    I LOVE to read, and I love to write; but I don’t write stories and I don’t *see* stories, unless I’m reading. Then the movie screen in my head goes on. I have never been able to plumb the depths of creative writing, but I am in awe of those that do ~ and very, very thankful! LoL
    So, to all you who can take ideas or visions and turn them into stories & books, bless you! And may you keep creating long and often.
    Kathy

    Reply
  21. Just got back from Dragon Lovers. Very cool site. Love the necklace.
    Thank you for posting about your creative process, Jo. Every time you do, I feel a little less alone.
    I serve two very different muses who like to keep me up at all hours.
    The second muse is a romance novelist with her own name and persona. My first muse (diehard epic high fantasy) was none to happy when she showed up, but the woman is very convincing. When she suggested a particular pen name to my first muse and how they could share it, well…. I now slave for two masters.
    The MIP I’m working on now was my second muse’s first “gift” to me. It arrived at two in the morning, along with her and her portmanteau, while I was trying to complete a homework assignment for an on-line class. Without introduction, she thrust a gold filigreed box into my hand and sashayed over to my first, now wide-eyed, muse. I fingered the box, knowing I shouldn’t open it. So I peeked. Just a little. And out popped a tall, dark uniformed hero with the most beautiful mouth I’d ever seen. Then came the heroine. And they clearly didn’t match. I tried coaxed them back into the box, but they flatly refused. “What am I to do?” I asked desperately, but my faithful muse was so enamored by the woman’s charms that I received no answer. Not from him anyway. The newly arrived Hero and Heroine, however, who wouldn’t stop talking. Helpless to do anything else, I wrote their back stories. For two months I fussed and fumed, asked them questions, researched time and place and stared blankly into space. Then, slowly, every slowly I began to realize, this hazel eyed usurping muse who eventually introduced herself as Lady Grace, hadn’t bought just one story. It was two! I looked again to my first muse but he was hopelessly charmed. So, I put aside my EHF novel and began book one if for nothing else but to take care of the two forlorn characters I’d uncovered. I am such a softy.
    I’m about 24,000 in but it’s not coming easy as I am quite out of my element. At all hours of the day and night, disconnected scenes and bits and pieces of fact pop into my head. I feel like a woman possessed! Lady Grace, when she’s not busy conspiring with my first muse, often tosses me a connecting fact or two along with those “brilliant conversations”. (In truth, she is quite a witty woman). But the words run through my brain like water through fingers. What I wouldn’t give to have some sort of recording device connected between Lady Grace and my laptop. Typing with wet fingers just seems so antiquated.
    Nina, who couldn’t be doing this with w/o the Word Wench community.

    Reply
  22. Just got back from Dragon Lovers. Very cool site. Love the necklace.
    Thank you for posting about your creative process, Jo. Every time you do, I feel a little less alone.
    I serve two very different muses who like to keep me up at all hours.
    The second muse is a romance novelist with her own name and persona. My first muse (diehard epic high fantasy) was none to happy when she showed up, but the woman is very convincing. When she suggested a particular pen name to my first muse and how they could share it, well…. I now slave for two masters.
    The MIP I’m working on now was my second muse’s first “gift” to me. It arrived at two in the morning, along with her and her portmanteau, while I was trying to complete a homework assignment for an on-line class. Without introduction, she thrust a gold filigreed box into my hand and sashayed over to my first, now wide-eyed, muse. I fingered the box, knowing I shouldn’t open it. So I peeked. Just a little. And out popped a tall, dark uniformed hero with the most beautiful mouth I’d ever seen. Then came the heroine. And they clearly didn’t match. I tried coaxed them back into the box, but they flatly refused. “What am I to do?” I asked desperately, but my faithful muse was so enamored by the woman’s charms that I received no answer. Not from him anyway. The newly arrived Hero and Heroine, however, who wouldn’t stop talking. Helpless to do anything else, I wrote their back stories. For two months I fussed and fumed, asked them questions, researched time and place and stared blankly into space. Then, slowly, every slowly I began to realize, this hazel eyed usurping muse who eventually introduced herself as Lady Grace, hadn’t bought just one story. It was two! I looked again to my first muse but he was hopelessly charmed. So, I put aside my EHF novel and began book one if for nothing else but to take care of the two forlorn characters I’d uncovered. I am such a softy.
    I’m about 24,000 in but it’s not coming easy as I am quite out of my element. At all hours of the day and night, disconnected scenes and bits and pieces of fact pop into my head. I feel like a woman possessed! Lady Grace, when she’s not busy conspiring with my first muse, often tosses me a connecting fact or two along with those “brilliant conversations”. (In truth, she is quite a witty woman). But the words run through my brain like water through fingers. What I wouldn’t give to have some sort of recording device connected between Lady Grace and my laptop. Typing with wet fingers just seems so antiquated.
    Nina, who couldn’t be doing this with w/o the Word Wench community.

    Reply
  23. Just got back from Dragon Lovers. Very cool site. Love the necklace.
    Thank you for posting about your creative process, Jo. Every time you do, I feel a little less alone.
    I serve two very different muses who like to keep me up at all hours.
    The second muse is a romance novelist with her own name and persona. My first muse (diehard epic high fantasy) was none to happy when she showed up, but the woman is very convincing. When she suggested a particular pen name to my first muse and how they could share it, well…. I now slave for two masters.
    The MIP I’m working on now was my second muse’s first “gift” to me. It arrived at two in the morning, along with her and her portmanteau, while I was trying to complete a homework assignment for an on-line class. Without introduction, she thrust a gold filigreed box into my hand and sashayed over to my first, now wide-eyed, muse. I fingered the box, knowing I shouldn’t open it. So I peeked. Just a little. And out popped a tall, dark uniformed hero with the most beautiful mouth I’d ever seen. Then came the heroine. And they clearly didn’t match. I tried coaxed them back into the box, but they flatly refused. “What am I to do?” I asked desperately, but my faithful muse was so enamored by the woman’s charms that I received no answer. Not from him anyway. The newly arrived Hero and Heroine, however, who wouldn’t stop talking. Helpless to do anything else, I wrote their back stories. For two months I fussed and fumed, asked them questions, researched time and place and stared blankly into space. Then, slowly, every slowly I began to realize, this hazel eyed usurping muse who eventually introduced herself as Lady Grace, hadn’t bought just one story. It was two! I looked again to my first muse but he was hopelessly charmed. So, I put aside my EHF novel and began book one if for nothing else but to take care of the two forlorn characters I’d uncovered. I am such a softy.
    I’m about 24,000 in but it’s not coming easy as I am quite out of my element. At all hours of the day and night, disconnected scenes and bits and pieces of fact pop into my head. I feel like a woman possessed! Lady Grace, when she’s not busy conspiring with my first muse, often tosses me a connecting fact or two along with those “brilliant conversations”. (In truth, she is quite a witty woman). But the words run through my brain like water through fingers. What I wouldn’t give to have some sort of recording device connected between Lady Grace and my laptop. Typing with wet fingers just seems so antiquated.
    Nina, who couldn’t be doing this with w/o the Word Wench community.

    Reply
  24. Just got back from Dragon Lovers. Very cool site. Love the necklace.
    Thank you for posting about your creative process, Jo. Every time you do, I feel a little less alone.
    I serve two very different muses who like to keep me up at all hours.
    The second muse is a romance novelist with her own name and persona. My first muse (diehard epic high fantasy) was none to happy when she showed up, but the woman is very convincing. When she suggested a particular pen name to my first muse and how they could share it, well…. I now slave for two masters.
    The MIP I’m working on now was my second muse’s first “gift” to me. It arrived at two in the morning, along with her and her portmanteau, while I was trying to complete a homework assignment for an on-line class. Without introduction, she thrust a gold filigreed box into my hand and sashayed over to my first, now wide-eyed, muse. I fingered the box, knowing I shouldn’t open it. So I peeked. Just a little. And out popped a tall, dark uniformed hero with the most beautiful mouth I’d ever seen. Then came the heroine. And they clearly didn’t match. I tried coaxed them back into the box, but they flatly refused. “What am I to do?” I asked desperately, but my faithful muse was so enamored by the woman’s charms that I received no answer. Not from him anyway. The newly arrived Hero and Heroine, however, who wouldn’t stop talking. Helpless to do anything else, I wrote their back stories. For two months I fussed and fumed, asked them questions, researched time and place and stared blankly into space. Then, slowly, every slowly I began to realize, this hazel eyed usurping muse who eventually introduced herself as Lady Grace, hadn’t bought just one story. It was two! I looked again to my first muse but he was hopelessly charmed. So, I put aside my EHF novel and began book one if for nothing else but to take care of the two forlorn characters I’d uncovered. I am such a softy.
    I’m about 24,000 in but it’s not coming easy as I am quite out of my element. At all hours of the day and night, disconnected scenes and bits and pieces of fact pop into my head. I feel like a woman possessed! Lady Grace, when she’s not busy conspiring with my first muse, often tosses me a connecting fact or two along with those “brilliant conversations”. (In truth, she is quite a witty woman). But the words run through my brain like water through fingers. What I wouldn’t give to have some sort of recording device connected between Lady Grace and my laptop. Typing with wet fingers just seems so antiquated.
    Nina, who couldn’t be doing this with w/o the Word Wench community.

    Reply
  25. I love hearing how stories are born. I think the rake and the nun on a road trip in France sounds like a hoot! Thank you for sharing your process, Jo.
    As a writer, I like to let my story go where it wants. My subconscious provides details of character traits or pieces of backstory that I don’t know I will need until perhaps two-thirds of the way through the story, when I’m wondering what will happen next, or how someone will react to an event, and then it will hit me–this seeming non sequitur way back on page ten suddenly assumes a significance that solves my dilemma. So in the first draft I throw everything at a story. Often the most unlikely things stick!

    Reply
  26. I love hearing how stories are born. I think the rake and the nun on a road trip in France sounds like a hoot! Thank you for sharing your process, Jo.
    As a writer, I like to let my story go where it wants. My subconscious provides details of character traits or pieces of backstory that I don’t know I will need until perhaps two-thirds of the way through the story, when I’m wondering what will happen next, or how someone will react to an event, and then it will hit me–this seeming non sequitur way back on page ten suddenly assumes a significance that solves my dilemma. So in the first draft I throw everything at a story. Often the most unlikely things stick!

    Reply
  27. I love hearing how stories are born. I think the rake and the nun on a road trip in France sounds like a hoot! Thank you for sharing your process, Jo.
    As a writer, I like to let my story go where it wants. My subconscious provides details of character traits or pieces of backstory that I don’t know I will need until perhaps two-thirds of the way through the story, when I’m wondering what will happen next, or how someone will react to an event, and then it will hit me–this seeming non sequitur way back on page ten suddenly assumes a significance that solves my dilemma. So in the first draft I throw everything at a story. Often the most unlikely things stick!

    Reply
  28. I love hearing how stories are born. I think the rake and the nun on a road trip in France sounds like a hoot! Thank you for sharing your process, Jo.
    As a writer, I like to let my story go where it wants. My subconscious provides details of character traits or pieces of backstory that I don’t know I will need until perhaps two-thirds of the way through the story, when I’m wondering what will happen next, or how someone will react to an event, and then it will hit me–this seeming non sequitur way back on page ten suddenly assumes a significance that solves my dilemma. So in the first draft I throw everything at a story. Often the most unlikely things stick!

    Reply
  29. France! Love it. Thank you. (and your dh) Serendipity here in that I posted at WW this week that I would like to read more stories set in France.
    I find the process of where stories come from delightful. It’s what keeps me going. Very fun to be shown your new story’s path from the beginning. You did write a nifty blog!
    I do write and have dreamt most of my storylines. (Which probably accounts for my unpublished state as my subconscious appears not to care one whit for the market.) I engage in the dream as a character in a film, but at the same time, part of my brain takes notes. I sympathize with the sorrows of lost dialogue!
    I dreamt a new one just last night, another way in which your blog is timely. The dream story was exciting and very, very funny, and I’d better go write it all down and cubbyhole it before it threatens to de-rail my WIP. Thank you for sharing about brainstorming your next book while you were under deadline to finish Lady Beware. Have fun with your rake and french nun!

    Reply
  30. France! Love it. Thank you. (and your dh) Serendipity here in that I posted at WW this week that I would like to read more stories set in France.
    I find the process of where stories come from delightful. It’s what keeps me going. Very fun to be shown your new story’s path from the beginning. You did write a nifty blog!
    I do write and have dreamt most of my storylines. (Which probably accounts for my unpublished state as my subconscious appears not to care one whit for the market.) I engage in the dream as a character in a film, but at the same time, part of my brain takes notes. I sympathize with the sorrows of lost dialogue!
    I dreamt a new one just last night, another way in which your blog is timely. The dream story was exciting and very, very funny, and I’d better go write it all down and cubbyhole it before it threatens to de-rail my WIP. Thank you for sharing about brainstorming your next book while you were under deadline to finish Lady Beware. Have fun with your rake and french nun!

    Reply
  31. France! Love it. Thank you. (and your dh) Serendipity here in that I posted at WW this week that I would like to read more stories set in France.
    I find the process of where stories come from delightful. It’s what keeps me going. Very fun to be shown your new story’s path from the beginning. You did write a nifty blog!
    I do write and have dreamt most of my storylines. (Which probably accounts for my unpublished state as my subconscious appears not to care one whit for the market.) I engage in the dream as a character in a film, but at the same time, part of my brain takes notes. I sympathize with the sorrows of lost dialogue!
    I dreamt a new one just last night, another way in which your blog is timely. The dream story was exciting and very, very funny, and I’d better go write it all down and cubbyhole it before it threatens to de-rail my WIP. Thank you for sharing about brainstorming your next book while you were under deadline to finish Lady Beware. Have fun with your rake and french nun!

    Reply
  32. France! Love it. Thank you. (and your dh) Serendipity here in that I posted at WW this week that I would like to read more stories set in France.
    I find the process of where stories come from delightful. It’s what keeps me going. Very fun to be shown your new story’s path from the beginning. You did write a nifty blog!
    I do write and have dreamt most of my storylines. (Which probably accounts for my unpublished state as my subconscious appears not to care one whit for the market.) I engage in the dream as a character in a film, but at the same time, part of my brain takes notes. I sympathize with the sorrows of lost dialogue!
    I dreamt a new one just last night, another way in which your blog is timely. The dream story was exciting and very, very funny, and I’d better go write it all down and cubbyhole it before it threatens to de-rail my WIP. Thank you for sharing about brainstorming your next book while you were under deadline to finish Lady Beware. Have fun with your rake and french nun!

    Reply
  33. Thanks for the comments,everyone. I’ve been off all day at a chapter meeting in Nanaimo.
    Grab onto those dreams and wacky ideas and write them down. You never know!
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  34. Thanks for the comments,everyone. I’ve been off all day at a chapter meeting in Nanaimo.
    Grab onto those dreams and wacky ideas and write them down. You never know!
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  35. Thanks for the comments,everyone. I’ve been off all day at a chapter meeting in Nanaimo.
    Grab onto those dreams and wacky ideas and write them down. You never know!
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  36. Thanks for the comments,everyone. I’ve been off all day at a chapter meeting in Nanaimo.
    Grab onto those dreams and wacky ideas and write them down. You never know!
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  37. Nina I am with you and Jo when it comes to brilliant conversations running through your mind–I too wish there was an internal tape recorder! But I just jot anything down as quickly as I can.
    And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*

    Reply
  38. Nina I am with you and Jo when it comes to brilliant conversations running through your mind–I too wish there was an internal tape recorder! But I just jot anything down as quickly as I can.
    And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*

    Reply
  39. Nina I am with you and Jo when it comes to brilliant conversations running through your mind–I too wish there was an internal tape recorder! But I just jot anything down as quickly as I can.
    And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*

    Reply
  40. Nina I am with you and Jo when it comes to brilliant conversations running through your mind–I too wish there was an internal tape recorder! But I just jot anything down as quickly as I can.
    And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*

    Reply
  41. “And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*”
    Oh, I can, Camilla. It’s just that such plotting never works for writing a book. When I know what’s going to happen, it really screws up my creativity.
    There are no right and wrong ways. We just have to find what works for us.We might like to have the equivalent of a sports car, but we end up with a truck, or we want a truck and we get a mini-van. Or a bicycle.
    We work with what we get. 🙂
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  42. “And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*”
    Oh, I can, Camilla. It’s just that such plotting never works for writing a book. When I know what’s going to happen, it really screws up my creativity.
    There are no right and wrong ways. We just have to find what works for us.We might like to have the equivalent of a sports car, but we end up with a truck, or we want a truck and we get a mini-van. Or a bicycle.
    We work with what we get. 🙂
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  43. “And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*”
    Oh, I can, Camilla. It’s just that such plotting never works for writing a book. When I know what’s going to happen, it really screws up my creativity.
    There are no right and wrong ways. We just have to find what works for us.We might like to have the equivalent of a sports car, but we end up with a truck, or we want a truck and we get a mini-van. Or a bicycle.
    We work with what we get. 🙂
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  44. “And I too thank you Jo for sharing your creative process. When sitting all alone jotting down a plot idea that sprang suddenly to life and having no clue how to put it together, it’s easy to assume much more experienced authors can plot at the drop of a hat. *g*”
    Oh, I can, Camilla. It’s just that such plotting never works for writing a book. When I know what’s going to happen, it really screws up my creativity.
    There are no right and wrong ways. We just have to find what works for us.We might like to have the equivalent of a sports car, but we end up with a truck, or we want a truck and we get a mini-van. Or a bicycle.
    We work with what we get. 🙂
    Jo 🙂

    Reply

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