Showing posts with label backlist. Show all posts
Showing posts with label backlist. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

inspiration and ideas

Hello and good morning! I'm Jenna Jones and I'm your host for the blog today.

Let's talk about inspiration. Every writer gets asked, "Where do you get your ideas?" at some point. I know that for me the question is hard to answer because there is no one answer. Below is just a partial list of things that have led to stories for me.

  • Song lyrics. I've got a vast music collection and enjoy the challenge of taking a song and letting its mood or subject inspire me. There's a meme I like to play of asking my friends list to name 2 to 9 actors, and then I use the next song to come up on shuffle to give me a plot. I've created over half a dozen plots that way that will eventually, knock wood, be screenplays or books.
  • Tarot cards. Aside from my three contributions to Torquere's Arcana line, I've also used plotting methods from Tarot For Writers to help me develop plots and characters. Sometimes I start completely from scratch; sometimes I use them to help me give existing ideas shape and structure.
  • Prompts. On Livejournal there are many communities where you can request a "bingo" card to give you ideas. Most of these are geared toward fanfic, but there's at least one geared toward original fiction, and you can request a card of all romance prompts or one with romance mixed with other subjects. While I've yet to complete a card (too many ideas, not enough time) my original-fic bingo card inspired an idea that I hope to complete later this year, on a subject that scares me a little to tackle: homelessness. We'll see if I can pull it off.
  • Names. I like to go through my name books and write lists of the names I like, and sometimes two names beside each other are enough to make me think, Hm, that looks like a couple. I wonder what their story is...
  • Pictures. The idea for The King's Diamond was born from two sources: the traditional meaning of the diamond birthstone, and the final page of my Treasures of Ancient Egypt calendar that hung in my kitchen that year: King Tutankhamen death mask. Ever since I was small I've found the story of King Tut to be very moving and sad, and while I was brainstorming for a plot I thought, What if I had a young king in a similiar situation, only this time he had something to protect himself with? What if that something wasn't an object, but a person? The theory of King Tut's murder has since been disproven, but I'm still pretty happy with the story it inspired.
  • Characters. Sometimes characters just sneak in and demand their story be told. Something Beautiful came about because while I was editing Chiaroscuro for submission I realized I wanted to tell Micah's story, and he would need someone for himself: thus Dune (a name I'd had for a character for years with no idea who he was or what story could be told about him) was worked into the plot.
There's really no one way a single story comes together, though with many of mine I can say what the main building point was. My story that comes out tomorrow, Ebony Angel, was born of several things. The names of the main couple, Jude and Austin, I'd had written down for a long time without any idea of who they were or what story they had to tell. I've had a print of an angel with dark wings on a deserted road hanging in my living room for a few years. There's a scene inspired by a dive bar I often drive past; there's another that came from a nightmare I had once. 

(And sometimes you just start writing, and the ideas come because your mind is open to them. That happens, too.)

Writers, where do you get your ideas? Readers, are there ideas you'd like to see developed or want to know more about?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Flashback Friday -- Redemption's Ride

Hey, y'all!

I was tickled as anything to get to promo one of my older titles.

Redemption's Ride is one of the few Old West books I've put out, and the only Old West Paranormal that I've done. The whole book started with the question (asked over margaritas at a little Mexican restaurant in Grand Junction, Colorado, believe it or not), "what if there was a preacher, a mute Indian, a farting Englishman, a three-legged dog, and Fred the Wonder Horse?"

The answer, of course, is: I'd give them a hell hound with a guilt complex and a past that's hunting his running ass. ;-)

Thus Redemption's Ride was born.

It is one of the few books that I've written that still makes me cry, every time. (There are two others -- prize packs for anyone who guesses who they are.)

Here's the official info:

138 pages / 45000 words
ISBN: 1-934166-18-9, 978-1-934166-18-5
Available file types - html, lit, pdf, prc, paperback

Reformed from his days as a bank robber and killer, Preacher rides the badlands with his crew of misfits, doing God's work and spreading the good word. Despite his friends, which include a three-legged dog, a mute Apache and a flatulent Englishman, he gets lonely on the trail, so it seems a gift from above when Hawk shows up.

Hawk is a scarred cowboy with a past he can't remember, and he thinks Preacher might be the answer to the itch he can't quite scratch. Together, with the help of their friends and Hawk's amazing horse Fred, they face an evil like the world has never seen. Can they survive Redemption's Ride?

Available here.

Thanks, y'all!

BA Tortuga

Rednecks and Romance -- because sometimes fistfights are foreplay