Find out if Eleanor’s thoughts match yours. Start a conversation with fearless, thought-provoking articles. Sign up now.
Inspiration comes in many forms. Because I’m a writer, my thinking process is a bit quirky. By this I mean, I become an analytical mad scientist.
For example, before I wrote Master of Manipulation, I remember thinking about the pain I experienced during my two previous marriages. Part of the pain was due to lack of communication and not knowing who my spouse was as a person. And when I tried to get to know them, they’d recoil. Being so young, I understand that what I thought was love was superficial. I saw what I wanted to see, which later, I learned, through a gazillion self-help books, that being honest with myself was paramount to my happiness and well-being.
My personal experiences serve as a catalyst to my stories. When reflecting on the past, I ask myself, “What if?”
What if I knew my husband for what he was, could I have loved him the same? Or, What if I kept asking the questions that made them uncomfortable, instead of finding things out the hard way?
If I could go back in time and change my naive mindset, I would’ve pushed for answers instead, I created a couple who knew each other well and placed them in a world where a blemish on their reputation could break them.
I became fascinated at how we are naturally interested in what people think about us even when we know they have no real control over our existence, unless we create the factor on our own. We like to feel as if we belong somewhere or we like to fit it. I took this feeling and created Olivia, the main character’s wife, who comes from a well-to-do, but dysfunctional family, where she wasn’t loved.
As a child, Olivia was an outcast and later took full advantage of being part of a high-society group, by running her mouth, too much. In her heart, Olivia thought what she was doing was harmless and knowing her husband, Avery, as well as she did, he wouldn’t react harshly if the gossip came to him. She suspected, as always, he’d tell her to stop and their lives would resume, untarnished.
When creating this scenario, I thought about how it would feel if a man discovered he was the hot topic of conversation among his wife’s friends and grows tired of dealing with the results of her gossiping, then decides to do something about it.
Before I wrote the story, I researched the harmful effects of mental stress and integrated those characteristics that makes Avery Hammer, Avery Hammer. Though he’s a sensible man, his wife’s behavior takes a toll on him and he finds himself inventing ways to keep from physically reacting each time his problem with her expands.
When I’m inside a character’s head, I think about what’s happening to them and how I would feel if it were happening to me, thus creating a relatable emotional reaction for the readers to experience. The emotional reactions of the characters breathe new life into their ordinary world.
Like what you read? Get more when you Sign up now for The Newsletter.