Sometimes inspiration comes from a source you hadn’t expected. That happened to me this weekend, twice.
I’ve always said, “You can learn something from anyone.” And it’s, true.
This past Saturday my local writing chapter, The Pocono Lehigh Romance Writers, held a two hour workshop with speaker Jonathan Maberry.
(Pictured here with PLRW members Kathy Kulig, Me, Christine Bush, Kathy Coddington and Tina Gallagher)
Jonathan is very industry savvy and a phenomenal speaker. He’s also a paranormal author of vampires, werewolfs and zombies. I hate zombies. The classic movie ‘Night Of The Living Dead’ scared the bejeus out of me. Just writing zombies makes me shiver.
I digress, sorry. Anyway, why would I go to a workshop by a guy who writes about those topics? Because… Come on, you got it. I can learn something from anyone and Jonathan is a great speaker.
So what did Jonathan teach me? Besides how to really kill a vampire and that you need to bury a werewolf in a coffin with silver upon its lid in order to keep the monster buried. He taught me other avenues to do research for my own books, which in turn will make my characters or stories unique. We’ve all heard from editors and agents that they’re looking for the tried and true but with a unique twist. Well, look to the past, where folklores began.
Jonathan inspired me to research my novel in the unlikely places. My second inspiration came in the form of a review for In The Presence Of Evil. I check on readers now and then, because I want to know what they like, what they think is dull and boring, and what makes them rave from the rooftops about an author’s work and I came across this review on Goodreads.
...IN THE PRESENCE OF EVIL is the third book released by Autumn Jordon, but the first book written by her that I have read. I must say, after reading a fast-paced, on edge story like it, I will be back for more....
You can read the entire thing here: http://tinyurl.com/3ojn7he
This woman got my writing. She enjoyed a story I created and slaved over for months. Let me tell you, for an author, a review like this is like winning the lottery. It gives us hope that someone will read the review and buy our work and perhaps like it just as much and they will tell a friend and they will mention you to another reader, and so on and so on. Word of mouth is still the best marketing tool. You know I’m hoping for flash fire of readers to passing along my name. I can dream, can’t I?
Sorry, I digressed again. This review and the others I received so far for In The Presence Of Evil inspired me to go deeper into my characters’ psyche (I started right away) and make my next novel even more emotionally stronger. I want my characters to connect with my readers. I want the reader to feel my characters’ angst and love. I want them to think of my characters as friends and wonder about them after they’ve put down the book. I want my books to be on their keeper shelves.
While I might not be there yet, I promise I’m going to keep trying. Maybe one day reader threads will start with my name as the topic and some of the people will say my work is a keeper.
Okay, that is what inspired be this weekend to hit my keyboard. What inspires you?