New Idea -- New Treasure
And so it begins. A new idea tickles my brain and fans the embers of my imagination. A book title floats to the surface of my mind unexpectedly while watching TV one night. And I am off and running.
While I am promoting my new novel that is now available, I am suddenly alive with the possibility of another tale. Another story set in Guthrie, Indian Territory right after the land runs when Guthrie was trying to find its way -- saloons sitting next to opera halls and lawyers obtaining divorces for people who traveled far and wide to the growing town to be shed of a bad marriage.
I love it when a story crooks a finger at me, bidding me to come closer. It's like a treasure hunt. You know the location of the buried treasure and now all you have to do is dig, dig, dig -- plot, plot, plot until you locate the gleaming crown jewel -- the crucible -- and the golden chain that binds all of your characters and scenes together. The crucible is extremely important, especially in a romance. It is the reason why the main characters can't escape their current situation. Without a believable crucible, the readers will think to themselves, why doesn't he/she just leave or give up? That's why some romances seem silly -- the characters argue and fuss and there isn't a good enough reason for them to continue to stay together. There has to be a life or death reason -- an all or nothing circumstance to keep the main characters in the same orbit.
In my new novel TO SEDUCE AND DEFEND ownership of a ranch is the crucible and the red thread is the tangled web woven by deceit.
I'm fleshing out characters now for the next book. I have uncovered the gems of the crucible and golden chain and now I'm adding other jewels or scenes to it. Plotting can be tedious and/or exciting, depending on your progress. However, once the book is plotted I always celebrate because the hard part is over. Now all I have to do is write. Oh, sure, writing is difficult, but it is the creative part of the process. Plotting is the business of it. Plotting is finding the right place to dig and then putting your back into it. Writing is after you find the treasure chest, pry open the lid, and begin to polish the beautiful jewels inside.
It's back to the shovel for me. Blisters are forming on my brain and my back is killing me!