by Inara Scott, guest blogger and author of Radiant Desire
Where do you get your ideas?
This is a common question that authors are asked, and I think perhaps people imagine that ideas drop, fully formed, into author’s minds. In fact, for most of the authors I know, the hard part isn’t getting ideas: it’s weeding out the avalanche of ideas that life drops on you, and turning them into a coherent plot. It’s an organic process of taking an idea, poking, prodding, and testing it, marrying it with other ideas, and then letting the resulting chimera grow and develop into something different and unexpected.
But what exactly does that mean, you might ask? How do you go from idea to story?
Here’s how it went for me when I was writing Radiant Desire. First, there were toys. My daughter’s Barbie faeries to be exact. I would look at them, lying all over the house, and muse to myself, “These faeries would be perfect for a romance novel.”
Seriously? You wrote about Barbies? No, no, remember, this was just the beginning!
Then there was a conversation on a blog about favorite romance tropes: you know, marriage of convenience, beauty and the beast, Cinderella, etc. I myself have always loved the beauty and the beast story, but it occurred to me that the man is always the beast. That didn’t seem fair.
Was there someway to make a woman the beast?
Hmmm. Barbies and Beasts. How to pull them together? Well, remember that in the Beauty and the Beast story, the Beast started out handsome, and then is punished for being wicked by being turned into a Beast. So perhaps my Barbie Beauty could be changed into something less beautiful. Perhaps not a Beast, per se, but what if she were turned into something, well, ordinary?
Yes, I thought, this might work! What if I took my perfectly beautiful faerie – the essence of male desire – and made her human? Better yet, what if my now-very-human faerie had to make a man fall in love with her, just like the Beast, but couldn’t use her beauty to do it?
Now, I thought about making my faerie selfish, or needing redemption the way the beast in the story is usually portrayed, but I decided that would make it very hard for people to identify with her and love her. (I think the woman is usually the beauty for a reason!) So instead of that, I left her ignorant of love, and ignorant of what it truly means to be human.
Of course, until you truly understand what love is, it’s very hard to use it against someone. My faerie would have to learn about love first hand before she could use it against our hero.
And voila! There you have it. A story is born. Beauty and the beast, Barbies, and true love.
Facebook fan page: http://www.facebook.com/inarawrites
Inara’s Website: www.inarascott.com
GIVEAWAY: I have an ebook of Radiant Desire up for giveaway. Open internationally. Enter by leaving a comment! Last day to enter: October 15, 2011.