Monday, March 30, 2015

Back to life, back to the blog-os-phere

I'm working on another book. For anyone keeping track, I've got five written and only one of those edited. And last week, after years of pondering how to tell a certain story close to my heart, I had an idea for a storyline and began typing away at night after everyone's gone to bed.

It usually takes me months to pump out a book, which is usually around 70,000 words. In three nights, I managed to write 26,000 words. Not only that, but I find myself not wanting to stop clicking my fingers on the keyboard when my alarm finally notifies me that I better head to bed or the next day could be extremely long.

I love all my stories, I really do. There have been some ideas I've had where, after a bit of typing, I'm not feeling it and abandon it altogether. And then there are others like these that I absolutely fall in love with and cannot wait to get all of the feelings out on paper. Especially when it's an important story to me.

All of my stories have a history rooted in my life. Sure, the ideas and plots are pretty far fetched from anything that's actually happened in my life because drama and storyline is what you read a book for. But if you look closely enough at my books, you'll see that the people, places, and some of the plot are part of who I am and important people, places, and things in my life.

Take my book "The Touch" for instance. AJ is the lead character, and his name basically stands for "All J's", or all my J's, meaning Jaime, Jake, Joel, and Jose - dear friends of mine, and a husband too! The character is comprised of bits and pieces of all of them - both what I love about them and what drives me crazy about them. The grandparent figures, Helen and Matthew, have a root in my life. Helen is based off of my mom's eight best friends who are like mothers to me, and the advice they pass down - the name is even one of theirs. And Matthew is after my great-Uncle, with the name of my big brother who died right after he was born. There are more instances of my life in the books, but I'll leave it to your imagination to figure it out ;) The series definitely has some basis off people I've known, loved, and perhaps even disliked, from my teenager years on up. But other than what's above, I'm not spilling ;)

I've read that some writers don't include anything personal in their books, but I don't know if I could do that. My characters and settings all carry a part of me with them, and I do put my heart and soul into these books. Of course, not every plotline stems from real life. While I'm working on a book about bikers, I don't think my suburban, baseball and ballet chauffeuring mommy self has really experienced any of the crazy shenanigans in the book. Some of the stories are just fun.

Some of what I write is healing for me, a chance to share something I've been through without saying it out loud, if that makes sense. That's what happens in one scene in "The Vengeance". I have the opportunity to say what I need to say and find a way to make my character come out stronger on the other side, and that's an amazing feeling.

This book about love that I'm working on now as well is one that holds a special place in my heart. It contains a lot of things I wish I could have said. The character faces many of the same choices I have and in some cases, makes the same decision while in others, chooses the path that perhaps I should have taken at the time. The actual plotline, well, that's definitely a bit more dramatic than anything that has actually happened in my life (and thanks to my husbands willingness to pretend to be a character while I drop a literary plot bomb on him, has a GREAT twist in it). It holds, however, an opportunity for me to say some things I've never said and make some amends I've never made, even if the person the amends are for would never even know it's for them. That's the wonderful thing about writing; you take your life and your decisions and your own story and build that into your work to create pieces that are important to you.

So, if you ever pick up a copy of one of my books and think you get a quick glance at yourself from the words popping out on the page, you might be right.

Or wrong. 

Either way, I hope it's fun for you to wonder - because it was certainly fun to write!

Happy writing all!

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