I would be a rich woman if I received a pound each time someone tells me, “I could write a novel.” I usually ask why don’t you write it. More often than not the reply is, “I don’t have time.”
Time is the factor which separates writers from would be writers. There is always something which beckons a writer whether it is a mundane task such as doing the laundry, which I should make a start on right now, or accepting an invitation.
I would be even richer if I received a pound each time someone asks, “Where do you get your ideas from?” When the writing is not going well I’m tempted to smile and reply, “From the supermarket.” Actually, that’s not quite as far fetched as it seems. I’ve often overheard partial conversations that trigger an idea or seen a face which seems to step out of a historical era, a Roman soldier, a Norman Knight, a Mediaeval lady, a Franciscan monk, a Cavalier etc.
Potential material to kick start the muse is all around me and in non fiction, biographies and autobiographies. I am a historical novelist so my muse responds to something I read about times past, which must then translate itself onto the computer.
Stephen King wrote. “Don’t wait for the muse. This isn’t an Ouija board or spirit world we are talking about here, but just another job – like laying pipe or driving long-haul trucks.”
So, how have I trained my muse? I have always understood the importance of having a place to write in which my muse and I can settle down. Once it was at a desk in the corner of the living room, today it is the smallest bedroom in the house which I have converted into an office.
After long hard battles my sometimes reluctant muse now understands that I have a regular writing routine. I rise early in the morning, deal with some e-mails, edit the last few pages of the previous day’s work in progress and then write until 10 or 11 a.m. Later in the day I work from 4 or 5 p.m. to 8 or 9 p.m., and sometimes my muse prompts me at night with an idea.
Anyone can establish a writing routine. The important thing is to write for set periods whether they are long or short. For example, if we write half a page a day we will have finished a novel by the end of the year. A bonus is that the muse will respect this and, as the saying goes, knuckle down to work.
My muse stays with me most of the time. When I’m doing housework, gardening or shopping Muse helps me to plot and plan. Recently, while at the health suite enjoying my time in the Jacuzzi, my muse and I have been considering the sequel to my novel, Sunday’s Child. We have been tossing ideas backwards and forwards, rejecting some and building on others. By the time we settle at the computer or the laptop we will have a plot and theme.
Regardless of whether we are published or unpublished, if we are determined, with the help of our muses, we will find the time and space to write.
Tangled Love January, 2012
Sunday’s Child June 2012
False Pretences October 2012
In honor of Canadian singer/song writer Lawrence Gowan, who loaned me such a beautiful piece of music for my debut book trailer for Guilty Kisses all proceeds from the sale from Dec 15th to Feb 15th will go to the Music Counts charity!
Guiliana Domenico, a petite, red headed, thirty-year old divorcee with a volatile temper, is between jobs. One Friday night, she encounters a mysterious stranger who tells her to expect a call for an interview. She receives the call and agrees to an interview on Monday afternoon at a new agency in Washington D. C. The director, Giacomo Leoni, offers her a position but on a trial basis—which antagonizes her. Dr. Leoni, a handsome bachelor, is the only son of a Venetian Duke and an American mother. As the months pass, Guiliana discovers her physical attraction to him growing, despite her distrust of men . . . especially, Italian men. Although it’s difficult, she maintains her cool demeanor and Jake believes she has no interest in him—which pricks his male ego. The growing tension between them carries over into their professional relationship, straining Guiliana’s self-control. After two particularly stressful incidents, Guiliana again encounters the mysterious messenger and recognizes that they share an intense awareness of each other. As Christmas approaches, she realizes she’s in love with two different men: one she doesn’t completely trust; and the other who isn’t as he appears. On Christmas Eve Guiliana accepts her destiny.
"Unfortunately, after five centuries or so, the comfortable vampire enchantment can, in fact, wane. Sometimes I think Catrina is longing for something more-just like her fooled admirers.I enjoy my music.I have to occupy myself with some post-war Goodman ‘Moonglow’ and Miller ‘Serenade in Blue’ in order to control my Welshire urges.These dark gifts cannot and shall not rule me.I will not succumb to animal anarchy the way Stephen does.For myself, I am content in my respectable role here until the next war comes calling. Can I admit to myself that I know Catrina is not content?How could she be?My voluptuous love has the predatory power of the wolf and all her fun feline charm.I enjoy watching her exude the dark magic allure as I play the music for her.Her exotic and spooky look brings the silver screen to life-curly black hair and white skin stamped with a perfectly deadly pout of red lips.I love her, I always have.I could not bring the vampiric gifts to anyone I did not love.I expected to spend the rest of my unnatural life with her. Although I don’t doubt Catrina loves me and will always have a space for me in her black heart still; deep down I know she intends to leave me for new vampire lusts..."
And so Lust, Book 5 in my ongoing Muse series Fate and Fangs: Tales from the Vampire Family is an unusual vampire tale in that can be a bit...depressing. Non-glitter, unhappy 900 year olds who don't brood at the local high school, Who knew?
I must say, I didn't really think much that Lust was going to be our December release in the set. The order of the stories was already planned chronologically. The sex and vampire speakeasy of James' 1955 tale naturally fell after the slavery of Victoria's Debauchery and the contemporary Humanity forthcoming in January from Gaston. It is amusing that Lust comes at what should be a reverent time, but let's face it. Unfortunately, our society is far more into the naughty than the nice, and that is exactly James' problem in Lust. His good guy vampire just can't compete against the new and upcoming hot stuff.
The Sundowner offers steamy Welshire vampires Jessica, Pamela, and Slava for underground vampire sex and biting fetishes in this mid-century tale from Professor James. Victoria’s twin brother James, however, is content with his gig as piano player at the club owned by their brother Stephen. James’ own love Catrina is the alluring singer at The Sundowner, but can he keep his longtime vampire companion away from the tempting, exciting young clientele?
I knew Lust was going to be a brooding turnaround after some of the fun and juicy heavy in the first two Fate and Fangs books, Love and Punishment, and this is probably why James is one of my favorite characters from my original The Vampire Family novel. We'd like to think we'd go all out and be heady, decadent vampires living the glorious moonlight high life. In actuality, however, we'd probably be much of the same, going along with the status quo, taking the screw from the man, and going through the unending darkness in our usual 9 to 5 monotony. 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.!
After guesting with several of my Muser Family, doing other blog posts, and answering tough interview questions, I realized then how fitting Lust actually is to Christmas and our December holiday season. We rush rush rush with all the buying, give unnecessary gifts to bosses or coworkers, sometimes people we don't even like!! We do the pretty paper and curl all the ribbons because it is expected of us. And really, we all know someone who becomes a Christmas bridezilla and flips out under the yuletide pressure!
In my newspaper work this week, I came across a note for a 'Blue Christmas' church service for those alone this season or in grief or suffering circumstances. Though such meetings are not unheard of, I was again reminded how many folks find Christmas as the most depressing time of the year. Doctors and scientists provide clinical explanations for the 'winter blues' and amid an entire street of ridiculous outdoor lights and blow up displays, we do always wonder about that one house that doesn't have one bulb upon it.
What has happened to what should be the soul of the season? Have we replaced it with shopping, sales, chaching? Can a vampire, a would be soulless evil thing, have a broken heart?
Damn! I've done depressed myself in realizing the connection! Here's a few links to my latest Fate and Fangs virtual visits. We have a little more fun with Roseanne and Margaret!!
I wrote 'A Christmas Sleeping Beauty' as my take on a fairy story and as a piece of historical fantasy - which is where the hot chocolate comes in. (Hot chocolate, or rather cocoa, is my favourite Christmas drink.)
Today 'A Christmas Sleeping Beauty' is published by MuseItUp.
Handsome, confident, a touch arrogant, Prince Orlando thinks that now he has found Sleeping Beauty, his kiss will wake her at once. When it does not, he realizes he has much to learn about life, and love.
Princess Rosie, trapped in her enchanted sleep, dreams of a mysterious man. Is he a rescuer, or a nightmare? She must fight to recover herself, and all before Christmas, for time is running out.