...that you have to create a world where you can live until it is done, and maybe even beyond that.
Though I am not a published author, I am a writer. I have written on five different novels now. I can tell you about them in detail because they have lived in my head for a while now.
|My writing space at a local coffee shop a couple weeks ago.|
I was brainstorming and developing ideas for this year's Nanowrimo project.
My first novel, True Love*, is about Lily, a journalist who moves into a small North Carolina mountain town for her first career job. While there she meets Xavier, a native mountain man who teaches math at the local high school. Neither can deny their connection and they are quickly drawn together.
Next came Story of Decades*, a sweet story about Amelia and Malcolm, a couple who meet as kids and stay together for a lifetime. They overcome troubles and struggles together, and even manage a few sweet moments in there too.
Leap of Faith* slapped me in the face. While on vacation in Las Vegas I had an encounter - it had no lasting affect on my real life, but a character was born on that trip that I have not yet been able to let go. Aria has spent her life running away, but when she meets Roman in a chance encounter in Downtown Las Vegas, her entire life changes in a way she never imagined.
I Am Bliss* came to me slowly over the course of several months leading up to Nanawrimo last year. During the summer I had a conversation with a Shaman that got me thinking about how we connect with nature, especially to heal. Rowan Bliss didn't want anything to do with the small town mountain life, so she went off to the big city as soon as she could. Except what she was looking for wasn't there either. She stubbornly sticks it out until she gets news of her mother's diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. For the first time, Rowan tries to hold onto those precious memories instead of forget them. She is finally able to find comfort in the woods that have been the background of her life.
A Collection of Consciousness*, my current Nanowrimo project, will be my fifth novel. It has been developing in my mind throughout the past couple weeks and even still is developing right on the page. That is one of the things I love about this project, you can just begin and let the story transport you to another world.
That is the thing about writing, you have to be able to live in that world because it becomes a part of you. I still think about True Love and the characters in it. One of the places Lily goes in that town is a happy place that's been in my head since I did a college internship in a North Carolina mountain town in 2006. I didn't start writing True Love until 2009. Over the last decade, I've added to it on numerous occasions as I've put different pieces of their puzzle together.
I just figured out a main theme to follow in Story of Decades a couple weeks ago. I wrote it down so I can go back to it, though it will still live and develop in my head in the meantime. That sudden inspiration of character development had me impatiently waiting to get back to it.
Maybe not everyone has this problem, but this is just how the creative process works for me. Getting it all written down and flushed out is hard, but I keep trying because I have this impossible pull to share the thoughts and stories that are inside me.
Then again, I don't see this as a problem, I enjoy what these character have to tell me. In a lot of ways they make me stronger. These characters help me learn more about the world and my perspective of it. I think that is fascinating and I am thankful to live in these different worlds once in a while.
*Working Titles - basically, this is what I call them in my head.