Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Ask the Author by Diana

Dear Reader;

I am often amazed at the varied inspiration authors come by.

Will you share in our blog today by telling us some of your wackiest, zaniest or most inspirational plot inspirations, titles or characters you have come up with when hit smack dab in the face with inspiration? Has a Billboard, news report or family member provided a jump off place for your writing?

50 words or less please.

We look forward to your response.

BTW: These are my red and green velvet Christmas skunks that were made by my Amish cousins. Any one see a story there?

From my heart to yours,


Sharon Elliott said...

This is probably not very wacky or zany, but I usually get my book ideas from a point made in a sermon or from my personal Bible study time. Once while hearing a pastor speak about the woman at the well, one line he said jumped out at me. He said, "That woman got Jesus' attention." Wow, I thought, that's what we all want to do; we all want to get Jesus' attention. I then flipped to another page in my notebook and wrote, "Get Jesus to Stop." I'm working on a manuscript that gives us inspiration from all the people who got Jesus to stop.

Diana said...

This is exactly what I am talking about. Thanks for sharing Sharon.

Suzanne said...

The ineptitude of the nurses/admitnistration at the nursing home where my mom went for rehab, and my desire to expose how bad it can be in such places, led me create a similar scenario in my WIP. The idea fleshed out to provide an entire sub-plot which dovetailed very nicely with the main plot and added to my protagonist's motivation.

dougvarrieur said...

Hi Diana, it's no secret where my inspiration comes from.....e mail from readers! The LORD has blessed me with the opportunity to help people like this;

A story of a reader who actually regained his vision due to FAT TO SKINNY, click to read

Or a story from a reader who has completely balanced their blood profile in 12 days due to FAT TO SKINNY, click to read

Or a story like this one,just about feeling good :)

Dear Doug,
Hello, I am a 23 year old, married, mother of one. After the birth of my daughter, I was devastated that my once small frame had disappeared beneath many pounds of fat. Of course, this was to be expected if I wanted to deliver a healthy child. But still, I was disappointed at how slowly the pounds were coming off after giving birth. My pre-pregnancy weight was 115 lbs. I weighed between 150 and 160 at the height of my pregnancy. Then, my weight settled around 134 lbs one year after giving birth. It seemed no matter what I did, my weight was stuck there and wouldn't budge. Then I saw a You Tube video for your book. I was blown away by your presentation on sugar! So I decided to order a book. I started the program in May at 134 lbs. Now, its the end of August, and I am proud to say I exceeded my goal of 125 lbs, to land at my current weight of 113 lbs! Wow! What a difference! I can now wear those jeans that I thought I'd never see again on my body! I am so grateful for your book, I ordered 5 more copies to give to family and friends. You have made a believer out of me, and it shows! Really, it shows!
Thank you, and please continue to spread the word about sugar!

Brittany Barkdull

Jeanette Levellie said...

Oh, dear. How much time do you have, dear?

Most of my stories bloom out of wacky things I do or say. I think if I write them and find a lesson in there somewhere, it will make my readers feel not-so-ditzy compared to me.

A few years ago we drove into a mall in Indianapolis right about lunch time. I pointed to a sign at the mall entrance, saying, "Oh, Peking Duck sounds good! Do you feel like Chinese, honey?" My patient husband said, "I'm okay with Chinese, but I think the ambience is a bit beneath us, Jeanette. That sign says Parking Deck."

See why my tag line is Nutty with a Dash of Meat?

Jeanette Levellie said...

I suppose now you'll want to know what inspiration I drew from this. I forgot: I'll have to go back and read the article!

Diana said...

We def. have to have you guest blog on that one! LoL

Bonnie Toews said...

Injustice. Incompetence. Betrayal. For my first novel, I suffered aphasia after a heart attack and was trying to relearn vocabulary by reading the dictionary. Right away in the As I came across a word that intrigued me - amanita, a poisonous mushroom that grows on the taproots of deciduous trees and has white spores. Later, I read about an agent in the biography of Churchill's masterspy, Intrepid, and he lamented about a member of the royal family he sent into Denmark to convince the atomic physicist Neils Bohr to defect to London. As a result the Gestapo captured and tortured her but she never disclosed her relationship to the royal family. At the war's end, her body was never found. She's still listed MIA. Since a nuclear explosion is described as a mushroom cloud, I named Churchill's nuclear project Amanita in my fictious story about what happened to the cousin of Britain's King George in WWII. My outrage at what happened in Rwanda became fodder for the next novel, and the experience of my husband's Mennonite cousin escaping from the Soviets in WWII and living in Paraguay spurred the idea for the third novel in the intrigue series based on TREASON.

But I don't think anyone can top Jeanette for originality.

David Stearman said...

One of my friends, a slightly-built American girl named Ruth, used to be a missionary in the Peruvian amazon. Back in the nineties, the two of us were together on the docks in Iquitos when a tough burly native grabbed my fancy Revo sunglasses and ran like heck. My friend Ruth ran like heck, too--right after him. I caught up with her just as she cornered him. The two of them exchanged a few angry words in his native tongue, and then Ruth turned to me and said "he says he'll sell them back to us for twenty Intis. Should we pay him, or just beat him up?"
Most of my novels feature strong women protagonists, all of whom contain a touch of Ruth.

Elaine W. Miller said...

Oh dear, dare I say an argument with my husband! In the heat of it, I said under my breath, "I must have been an idiot to marry that idiot!" Voila! I burst out laughing,kissed my honey, went to my computer and started my book, "We All Married Idiots."

Diana said...

Elaine, you may just win a prize for that one! Looking forward to reading that book :-)

Elaine W. Miller said...

I look forward to you reading it too!

Sandi Rog said...

Great idea, Diana. This will be fun!

I once was inspired by a scene from Thumbelina for a scene in my book! I have a three-year-old daughter, so I see a lot of animated movies. :-) It's the scene where Thumbelina meets the prince for the first time and they fly off together declaring their love (yes, all this after they just met; but we'll ignore that fact). My daughter watches this scene with her hands folded beneath her chin and her eyes aglow. It's so cute!

Anyway, it inspired a scene where one of my characters dies and meets Jesus. It was tempting to have them fly off and walk on water together, but there is a point where things could come across a bit too melodramatic, and well, comical. I wasn't shooting for comedy, so I toned it down a bit. :-)

I actually copied a small portion of it onto a blog post if you're interested in getting a taste of how it's written. Here it's written for the reader and not from the character's perspective:

Anonymous said...

Hi Diana,
I'd have to say I get a lot of ideas from people I meet. For example, my husband's last tour in D.C., we were at a Christmas party. I met a young woman who had a Master's in Colonial American Design. Her job? To travel around the world with the State Dept. decorating American Embassies. It was her dream job. The catch? She'd just gotten engaged to a Naval officer, a submariner, who had orders. We left the party. I never saw her again, but her dilemma stayed with me. A few years later I wrote, "Design for Love." I did find out what happened to her when I toured State's design dept. She quit and became a museum curator in Honolulu, where they were stationed. Sort of a story within a story.

Martha Pope Gorris

Diana said...

Sandi, Thank you so much for sharing this with us. I just left the wedding reception of a young client of mine. The bride and groom were stary eyed and so in love. A beautiful thing to witness.

Diana said...

Martha, those dream jobs seem to all come with a catch at times. Glad to hear they worked things out. Has to be so tough for our military familes. Their love is challenged in ways others are not.
Great story inspiration.