I don’t know about all authors but for me my books come from various places. My Book “The Lioness” Title may change, is due out next year 2015. It came from a song “Back to One” By Brian McKnight. Don’t ask me how the story came from that but walking each day in Kampot Cambodia I would listen to my iPod and that was one of my favorite songs. One day the story played out in my head. Now because of where I lived, living in another country on the fringes of the what goes on in the world made me more aware of what goes on say in the middle east. Like after 9/11 our home was out on the salt fields and we were in the middle of many Muslim neighborhoods. I could hear the call of the faithful to prayer all the time. One of our everyday activities was sitting on the porch after dinner and the kids playing games outside in the front. It was also a activity that probably everyone knew and could count on and also every day after 9/11 we would watch the missionaries from Saudi Arabia or Indonesia go by. Now I never felt any problem or any hate from our Cham Muslim neighbors but you could feel the hate from these missionaries who were trying to change the Cham from their form of Islam to the strict form that is practiced in Saudi Arabia. There is a Khmer word but I don’t know how to even spell it but many little new mosques started sprouting up, also funded by that country because they got the Cham to convert to the form of Islam that Bin Laden was known for so the Khmer called them Children of Bin Laden. So Living there gave me a different perspective of what was going on in the world rather than had I lived here in the states.
So my book “The Lioness” was born out of that.
I write about what I know. I am constantly doing research, even with romance you will know I am writing about either the country that is my second home, Cambodia, or I may throw in something like the orphanage story like in Redemption at Midnight. Unfortunately it really happened. I really wish Bella and her men could have been there but there was a young German who witnessed the atrocities and was moved to action.
I put in my family genealogy or tidbits about my family.
My Vampires were born because a friend asked me to write a dark, gothic story that could be put into a screen play. I started it but then shelved it until I brought it back out, dusted it off and changed my vampire slightly. So was born One Thousand Years to Forever. I took an idea that some may think is overwritten and put my own spin on a vampire story .
Then there is my book The Kings of Angkor. There are a few novels about King Jayavarman VII BUT none from my perspective and I feel having lived in Cambodia for as long as I have, and having family in that kind of life gives me a different look and perspective to that world. Again, I put my own spin on that story of timeless love that people still know about that existed between King Jayavarman and his two queens . They were the Royal Triad . Their love for one another, the queens were sisters is still know among circles. They loved their King and their country.
My mother’s family has been in the states since 1628. I have all the documents for her family and that of my father’s who also came to the states in 1628. Now there are the branches to those two trees that are interwoven. Just like a good story those branches adds to it and gives my family depth and richness. One of those is My Great, great grandmother who was Anna Putnam who married my great, Great grandfather Sherlock Bronson. Anna was from the Salem, Mass Putnams who were involved with the witch trials. Those trials were nothing more than an older brother mad at his younger brother who was getting the bulk of their father’s estate so he stirred up the whole hysteria. BUT through that down through the years my women in my family have been on the fringes of witchcraft. I can barely remember my mother but I remember my mother’s love for books and seeking and knowing more about the “other world” that was part of our family.I am not fortunate enough to have family diaries like a friend of mine but things come to me more natural and my seeking, like that of my mother has opened a whole new world. So I write about it, though I don’t divulge any secrets. If I write about witchcraft it’s fiction.
So When I embarked on my book Emma Brewster: Too Hot to Handle I brought in a hunky fire fighter (FF). I am a fire fighter and am proud of that. I worked hard to become that. So my book brings in my knowledge of that also. I read a book while taking a hiatus from writing paranormal and it’s by a very well known author. She writes about witches and I think it was her 3rd book and I had to throw it down because it had one of the characters as a FF and having his SCBA mask ripped off when he fell. Now let me tell you. When you put on your mask it’s not just held on by a strap, it’s held on by a web kinda cap(I asked my husband who has been a FF since he was 15 down in Long Island & is a 3rd generation FF, he couldn’t come up with a name either)that you put on and then since it on very tight in the back and then under your chin (You cinch up the straps). Then when you connect to your tank and put your helmet on and tighten that down, nothing and I mean nothing short of you taking that off or your head coming off is gonna get that mask off. BUT in her book she had the male FF’s mask fly off… It won’t happen and I threw the book away. So you see I write about what I know . I don’t need to borrow or copy anything. I write about what I know and what the writing gods send to me. I think when you see Emma Brewster you will be happy you met her and read her story. Will there be a second one? No. I am content to write romantic comedy once in a blue Moon. If you haven’t already noticed even in my serious Vampire/Witch stories I put a little comedy to offset the seriousness of the book.
My covers, I love my covers. I had my first ,The Kings of Angkor cover done by a friend in India. My first two vampire books OTYtF and IBWfY, they were stock images I bought from Jimmy Thomas’s site, RNC. I have never seen anyone else use the same cover as my One Thousand Years to Forever BUT my I’ve Been Waiting for You, I have seen it used again. So when it came time to do Redemption at Midnight I knew it was going to be a custom shoot. I took a scene, sent it to Jimmy and he sent me picts and biographies of female blond models. I picked and then Jimmy had to find a Adirondack chair. Jimmy is a perfectionist and it shows in his covers. So know that cover came from a scene from that book. A lot of hard work and time went into to creating that wonderful cover. He did another cover shoot for me and the new cover for The Kings of Angkor was re-born.
I have always loved the show Bewitched. I loved the cartoon like pre-part of the show. I wanted that for my Emma Brewster since it was a Romantic Comedy. I asked an author who had done hers, she pointed me in the direction of cover artist Rebecca Poole. We talked, I sent her my synopsis and she sent me stock images. Stock images are that, you buy something that’s out there and it becomes yours in a sense. Then the Cover artist can work magic of her own on it adjusting or changing color or adding to it to make it your own, like add a moon. (All my books have moons, so far) Now when I had my custom shoots done, Jimmy gave me the best and I picked what I wanted but in order to make that custom shoot pay, he puts the hundreds of other shots out for other authors to be able to purchase. NOW if someone creates a scene such as my Redemption I will be a bit upset. BUT unless I copyright it I don’t think I have much in the way of legal rights to do anything. It does represent a scene in my story and I love that story from start to finish. It’s the same with the story Emma Brewster:Too Hot to Handle. It’s my story, my cover and I take the story of a witch and tell her story. It’s my own, pure and simple.
I hope those of you who are not authors will understand a little of what goes into writing books from start to finish, at least for this author. It’s different for each author. When a snafu happens such as “Did you see her cover? or Do you think that author is copying you?” That takes the author out of their zone of creativity and makes them spend time writing a blog post on writing a book when they should be writing their book… For me I can’t cook until my kitchen is clean , or I can’t go to bed if the bed is a mess. The same goes for my writing. I can’t write till something that is bothering me, gets taken care of.
I truly hope everyone will get a copy of it( Emma Brewster it’s on pre-order on Amazon, just type in the title Emma Brewster:Too Hot to Handle,). I think you will be pleased with her story and see it’s her own story. She is her own witch and comes from a long line of them.