Friday, September 16, 2011

Inspiration is all around me!

Lately I've been obsessing over vintage sewing machines.   I even picked up 4 more to work on, while restoring my grandmother's old Singer 15 (made in 1942).  During all this work, a new character quietly snuck into my mind...this time it's a male.  Big surprise for me!  All of primary characters to date have been female or gay men.  This guy's completely different. 

I'd been referring to him as "The Scot" as he sounds a bit like Sean Connery, but he had yet to reveal his name.  Then during a fun writing exercise at our last meeting, he finally "showed" himself to me.  I'd no idea what I was going to do with him, what he did for a living, or much other than that he's somewhere in his 70's, he's a widow, and he fixes vintage sewing machines.  (Which is a really big problem for me, because if I see something "pretty" that I like he has to chime in and encourage me to "save" it).

Thanks to the questions we had to answer during the writing excercise, I now know so much more about him.  How he was/is a spy for the US, helped out pre- and post- World War II, and how his enemies have not forgotten what he'd done to them or their families.  I know what his late wife looks like, how he still talks to her, and that his granddaughter will soon be wed.  I'm not sure yet, where the story is going, but the first part is rather interesting.  I think he'll be fun to write.

I also received some very helpful feedback on my first book.  It's exactly what I needed to hear, and I'm already looking at rewriting the first chapter, and huge parts of the first book to make it better for the readers.  While I've always known the whole story, I could never tell if it made sense to anyone else.  Maybe I'm weird, but I'm thrilled to be going back into Jess' first book and tearing it apart to make it better.  That's what I like about this group, it's more than just about how to get published, it's also about fine tuning the craft.

Our conference is just around the corner and I'm eager for it to get here!  I hope to come out with a head full of chaos, new ideas, and tips for making my writing better.


Patricia Kiyono said...

I think it's great that you get so much from the meetings! I get inspired just being around other writers and discovering I'm not alone in my frustrations. Thanks so much for your positivity!

Tess Grant said...

I think The Scot's story sounds very interesting. Would love to hear more about him!