Sunday, February 2, 2014

Telling A Story Requires Hard Work

by: Robin Janney

As I mentioned in my last post, I was going to further talk about the hard work that goes into writing. C. P. Stringham beautifully illustrated part of it in her last post, A Real-Life Superhero.  Not content with internet research, she ventured out and interviewed a person in the field she was writing about.

I myself have never been that brave and have always relied on internet research and real life experience.  I can't begin to tell you how many hours I spent on the internet, and even in some real books in the library researching my character Angela's bout with pneumonia, and even the finer details of her Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  While I myself have issues with anxiety, I wouldn't say I have PTSD!

And I really shouldn't say I'm "not that brave" because I met C. P. Stringham for the first time ever this Saturday!  It was my idea, because I was curious as to whether or not we'll 'hit it off' in reality.  And we did, which you'll hear about in a later post.

Hours go into a novel.  Many hours.  I don't want just the grammar to be correct, or incorrect as the dialogue calls for, I want the events and trials to be as realistic as possible.  While I want to stretch the truth as far as possible, bend the rules and challenge reality...first I need to know what that truth is and what the rules are!

Especially since in my Romance I like to include a touch of Fantasy.  Dragons and shared dreams/visions are enough to give it the Fantasy tag in my opinion.  Because I plan on including more of the shared dreams in future books, I have begun to peruse different articles about that subject.  Because it's one of those gray areas that no one agrees on, I'll be allowed more freedom to experiment and press the limits.

While it can be tedious sometimes, it isn't always so.  Last November I had to chance to visit New York
Just buildings to some...a city I fell in love with <3
City for the first time in my life and as fun as it was, it was also part research.  When creating my character Craig, I made him a native New Yorker, city born and raised.  At that time, I didn't have the vision for the series that I have now.  In my original vision, Craig and Angela didn't leave their small town of Tyler's Grove but instead started a family there.  Needless to say, in the near decade the novel sat in my email, something in me changed enough that it was no longer content with that future for them.  In fact, the life events at the end of Farmer's Daughter demanded a different future for them.  A future that includes Angela setting foot in NYC herself for the first time - and that was something I wanted to have the experience for.  Watching CSI: NY only goes so far!

Storytelling for me is a labor of love.  A love for writing, for the physical coalescing of words and images that I can't do verbally.  A love for the characters and worlds that I create.  And a love for you, the reader, which inspired me to tell the story in the best manner possible.

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