June 11, 2009 Leave a comment
I’m inspired to pull up my boots and slog through the recreation of my novel. It was put on hold a few years ago and pulled out a few months ago to use for my screenwriting class. What inspired me? A great book.
Memoirs of a Scandalous Red Dress by Elizabeth Boyle is the 4th of The Bachelor Chronicles. I adored this book, laughed, felt a personal connection, and could see all the layers of story beneath the words. That’s what makes a great book, when timeless truths are rippling beneath the sass and adventures.
Slipping back and forth in time between 1814 and 1837, the doomed romance of Pippin and Dash is challenged through war, treason, distance, secrets, and alcoholism. Dash’s long-hidden wounds and despair make him a less than appealing hero. Pippin’s secrets and sacrifice are also weighty burdens to overcome. Fortunately the love and passion is still there, and Pippin and Dash are trapped for weeks on ship which offers little chance to escape from the other. Love wins in the end (or it wouldn’t be a romance) but the way issues are faced, and the transformations created, were delightful surprises and twists, and highly satisfying.
What really inspired me is, I pulled the first book of the series, This Rake of Mine, off my bookshelf, read through the first 50 pages, and marveled at how easily, as a reader, I was introduced to so much STORY and so many characters, now developed into books of their own, within 50 pages! This is why she’s a “bestseller”. A novelist has to master both the craft of story and the clarity of writing.
As happens, as I re-enter the work zone of writing a novel, agents Kristen and Nathan posted about their desire for new writers to learn the craft before submitting for (or dreaming of) publication. Personally, I was a technical and business writer for years. Few would consider applying for a job as a tech writer without a little training or classes, yet I know it is much easier than crafting a novel.
A good book inspires me to excel at my craft, and I will take a break and reward myself for the work I do, with a good book or two, that are already waiting on my To-Be-Read pile…