Sometimes when I'm writing, the words just flow from my fingertips. It's a trance-like state where what I envision in my head magically transforms into the story I want to tell. Other times, I sit, poke at the keyboard and nothing comes out right.
It's those other times that I desperately look for inspiration anywhere I can find it. Movies, music, taking a long drive, cooking, walking the dogs. When I step away from the computer I let my mind think about the little details. Bits of description that will inspire and move the story forward. Redirecting my focus to little details can sometimes help remove a creative block.
Put yourself in your scene and consider the objects that would be around you. Is there something your character should be wearing or carrying? What objects would naturally be in the space your character is in? What kinds of things would your character hear or smell?
In my novel, Feral Escape, my heroine, Molly has been kidnapped. Her abductors left her in a cave and no one has come to check on her in a couple days. I kind of boxed myself into a corner with this one. There's not a lot exciting about a cave. I had to think about Molly's mindset – she's scared. What might be in the cave with her? Rocks, yeah, duh, of course. What else? Empty water bottles. Ah! The kidnappers were bringing her food and water daily. They've since stopped and Molly is scared she's going to die of dehydration. What else? The cave is cold. What's missing? A blanket. The kidnappers brought her food and water, but no one thought to provide her with a blanket. Now she's cold and in pain from sitting on the hard stones for so long.
My hero, Ivan has received a clue about Molly's whereabouts and goes to look for her. What will he take? It's night time. A flashlight. A backpack. Infrared binoculars. Hmm…interesting detail. I don't think that's an item everyone has around the house. What does he find on his search? A soggy, pink sneaker. Molly's sneaker, letting him know he's on the right track. Maybe.
Thinking about these little details and their connections to the characters helped the scene grow. Each of the details helped add to the story and move the plot along. Hopefully they gave some insight to my characters as well.
Let your imagination run free!
What tricks do you use to help your story move along? What sort of details do you appreciate when you're reading a book?
Blurb: Molly has been captured, imprisoned, and is near-death when rescued. Spending time with Ivan has her re-thinking her vow not to take a mate.
Molly finds the mysterious and aloof Ivan deeply irresistible—she has from the moment she met him. But she's spent the last year dodging her family's plans to mate her to another shifter with no intention of changing her mind. Will being kidnapped and imprisoned in a cell where food and water stopped coming days ago cause her to lose hope?
Ivan volunteers every waking moment to find Molly since she went missing. His reaction to the sweet little cat shifter surprises him. He's fiercely determined to never settle down with another shifter, but he can't escape the draw she has on him.
Rescuing Molly is only the beginning. The danger she and the rest of the runaway cat-shifters have managed to elude is closing in on them fast. Ivan is committed to protecting Molly from any threats, but his past comes back to bite him when his old enforcer friend tells him he's been hired to bring Molly in. Will his love for Molly turn them both into prey?
Huddled in the corner of her tiny stone cell, Molly Goldfoot stared into the darkness. Were it not for the small crack between the rocks, she would have no idea if it was night or day. She wrapped her arms around her knees, pulling them tight to her chest. A shiver rippled through her body. She'd lost track of how long she'd been held captive. In the beginning, someone had brought food and water each day, but that had stopped.
She closed her eyes and visualized her friends, Martha, Kipp, Deacon, Oscar, and her new friend, Onyx. Were they searching for her? Why couldn't Onyx's wizard boyfriend conjure up some magic to find her? Maybe it wouldn't matter. Wherever they had imprisoned her must be magically spelled. No matter how many times she tried, she could not shift into her cat form.
The last person she'd been with before she'd been so rudely grabbed and shoved into the back of a dirty, smelly old van. Would Ivan search for her? He was older than her. Sexy. Dangerous. She wanted him bad. Why had she been so damn stupid and refused his offer to walk her home?
Cause she hadn't wanted the others to know she went to meet him on the sly. For the millionth time, she wanted to kick herself. She and Oscar were friends. Sure, they'd kissed a little, but it wasn't serious. There shouldn't have been a problem with Ivan walking her home.
Molly shook her head, and a sad chuckle trickled past her lips. This was her punishment for her trampy behavior. She altered her position on the hard stone floor, wriggling her left foot which had fallen asleep. At some point she'd lost both her sneakers, so only thin, dirty socks protected her feet. Her butt hurt. This captivity thing became old quick.
Had her family orchestrated this? As she did every day, several times a day, she stood up and shuffled the few steps to the front of her prison.
Author Bio: Autumn Jones Lake was born and raised in Upstate, New York. In addition to writing, she runs her own business from home. A big fan of horror movies and spooky books, it wasn't until recently she realized all the tales she writes need to include a hunky hero and a happily ever after.
When she's not writing, Autumn spends time listening to music, going to concerts, reading, gardening, acting, and collecting nail polish. While those things are fun, Autumn is happiest sitting in front of her computer into the wee hours of the night, weaving stories the characters in her head whisper to her.
Autumn lives in Upstate New York with her husband and their three rescue dogs. She is actively involved with several dog rescue groups and her local RWA chapter.
Visit Autumn at: