Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Book Conception

You heard me... We are having book sex today. But probably I should esplain... I thought doing a WriMo was a really nice opportunity to examine the book in parts (or writing thereof)... so I will talk generals, and where appropriate, give an example or two from the WiP...

I still plan on blogging most days, BTW, but it's possible I will miss one here and there... maybe count on 4 days a week. Probably they won't be the formal, well-researched things I usually do *shifty* (if you are new here, you may not have recognized that as sarcasm... I am periodically informative, but most of what you will learn from me is how to get into trouble... though I do get bonus points for my attitude and work-ethic most days... unless you are a figure of authority, whereby you have your work cut out for you because I don't like to be told what to do <*/digression>

ANYWAY...

The book-writing theme will maybe be 2 days a week (maybe more initially—I have three planned this week), and it's possible the other days I will be silly... I know. SHOCKING.


BOOK SEX

Which should NOT be confused with sex in books, which is neither here nor there, in my opinion, if it goes with the story, YAY, if not *rolls eyes*, but it is NOT what I am talking about...

I'm talking about WHERE DO BOOKS COME FROM? You know... the birds and the bees of the books...


*   Dreams (I have had a lot of book elements come from dreams)
*   Observations. Sometimes this is just a matter of opening your eyes to the everyday... listening to conversations (don't let anyone tell you it's rude—It's RESEARCH!), looking at settings for set-ups,
*   Reading. They SAY there is no new tale, just a new telling...
*   Songs. Anyone else out there get serious book inspiration from a song, whether lyrics, music, or... history of a song?
*   Movies/TV...
*   What you KNOW.

I'm sure I'm missing oodles, but these are all sources I've taken ideas, snippets or details from each of these sources at different times. It's like they are the nice ova... but the thing IS, unlike mammal sex, books really get better results if you have a collection from at least a few sources. And then they need (for me) the fertilizer of some mind games... how would this idea fit with that OTHER completely unrelated idea... and then it needs to GESTATE a good long time.


My WiP

The idea for my BuNoWriMo novel was originally born when I read Kerry Greenwood's Earthly Delights. It had all of the FUN of Cozy Mystery, but included a drug overdose theme, a sex shop run by a person the MC doesn't know the gender of, a witch, the need to dress as a dominatrix... it was like a Cozy, but Tarted up!!! Now it had a baking theme... I don't really DO domestic skills, even run as a business... plus... I just don't KNOW anything about that stuff... but I DO have a vast knowledge of a certain craft... that would be clever and FUN for a woman to be an entrepreneur... Microbrews... (so we have a BOOK and a WHAT you KNOW). I've done some OBSERVING of the types of neighboring shops that would fit and be fun—plus there is my knowledge of Portland... I even plan to do a little research, though that may come after I write the book.

I first had this idea about a year ago... I considered it for NaNoWriMo, but it hadn't fermented enough, yet. And a micro, to taste proper, needs its time to ferment...



What about YOU? Where do books come from in YOUR world?

24 comments:

Crystal Pistol said...

Book Sex. Love it. Only YOU could put the creation of a book in such terms. Clever!

Trisha said...

Book sex, wheee! Hehe. I honestly have no idea where my book themes come from... I probably get inspired by something I've seen during the day, but sometimes the thoughts just seem to flash into my head (sometimes at the most inconvenient moments, too, i.e. when I'm trying to get to sleep :P).

It's 3:21 pm on Day 1 of BuNo and I'm not started yet...still at work. Siiiigh...

Mustang Sally said...

What about YOU? Where do books come from in YOUR world?

um ... the library ;) sorry, couldn't resist. This post is great because now you have me thinking ... and that can be dangerous.

I've always thought of writing in terms of 'articles' or if a book, more along the lines stories like Erma Bombeck did. I LOVE to read fiction but I never really thought about writing it because what would I write?

Yes, what I need to know is about the book sex ... so please, continue, I'm all ears (I feel like such a perv)

M.J. Nicholls said...

Yes, it's mainly what you KNOW, what you've experienced, otherwise we'd all be writing about Hobbits, and that wouldn't be sensible now, would it?

Ketutar said...

"microbrewery" is a really silly name. It makes me think of ants brewing ale. But I just made some dandelion wine. :-D

my book ideas come from
- dreams - very much so. But where do the ideas for my dreams come from?
- stories in books, movies, tv and elsewhere
- historical persons and events
- blogs - every now and then someone posts a very interesting entry about a real person, or happens to say something, that makes me associate to something else, and there we go
- surfing - the images and words that pop up when you google with no apparent association... like "type hot or not", "Roselady", "she has no respect for...", "he feels very lonely", ""this is Wednesday", "Dante's Inferno", "Venom", "Drakthrone" and "Gaston" together with pictures of a siamese cat, leather corset, Lord Byron, 70's dandy, a red haired woman and Mata Hari. Now, write! :-D
- book covers and snippets. They are often more inspiring and interesting than the rest of the book :-D
- discussions - it's sometimes enough to hear just a few words or so
- newspapers and magazines
- documentaries and "popular science" magazines.

I had come so far when I noticed that dream picture, and just had to go and post it in my Tumblr and Illustrator's Inspiration, and then I had to just post some more pictures to my Tumblr, and then I found myself reading other blogs and... you know :-)
Back here :-)

I don't use what I KNOW as inspiration. I use what I WANT to know, and then I use the research bit to find out more information, so that I can write what I know :-D It doesn't really take that long to learn "enough"... on the other hand, there are dozens of books where the writer BELIEVES to know "enough", but doesn't, which makes people who do KNOW throw the books in some place where books aren't meant to be storaged. Like fire. But those writers still keep writing about the things they don't know even close enough, and they get published and so on, so why the heck bother?
Especially when it's a NaNo or BuNo.

If you like, I can check your baking bits, if you ever dare to write about that. I know quite a bit about domestic skills, especially baking, even though I don't DO much :-D

Old Kitty said...

NAKED books are the best!!! Yay for book sex!!!

Mine definitely comes from daydreaming. Lots of tissues needed. Ahem!! Running away now!!

Take care
x

Jan Morrison said...

Hmmm...I`m going to look at this right now:

Feckless - came from a desire to write about mothering in a different way.

True - a couple of things - my ex-husband was poisoned by the pimp of his girlfriend in Thailand and ended up with a stroke and some brain damage so I `what iffed`that and then a dear friend of mine has a husband she is mad for who has early altzheimers so...voila - a book about what happens when your husband is there but not.

The Rock Walker - the idea for this mystery came to me at an art opening when an artist I know was saying how she was a `rock walker` at Peggy`s Cove back in the day. Kept her fed while she continued to paint. Voila.

Earth Bound - I went twice in the last couple of years to Annapolis Royal and realized that the Historical Gardens would be a great spot for a murder. And so my second Kitty MacDonald book was born.

Then there is the slow ingestation - a friendship and the weird circumstances surrounding it have been growing in my writing womb for years and years. We`ll see.

jennymilch said...

Hart, I'm going to miss your footnotes, and carefully documented, if dry-as-dust prose...not...

Anyway, your sources are a very interesting batch. I'd also add, what if's? And that thin line when we can see--not quite over the distant horizon--how different things would be if something went badly, horribly wrong?

Hart Johnson said...

Crystal-teehee--thanks!

Trisha-get writing!!!

MS *snort* The library... yeah, my world too... As for what to write... I find I need several pieces from different sources, and then there is this... epiphany and I can start...

Mark-I know, right? Or dragons, or witchcraft? Who needs that nonsense *shifty*

Ketutar *giggles* brewing ants... too funny. Love that perspective of what you WANT to know. I am not that diligent on researching--I get pulled on too many tangents--but I admire it.

Jenny *giggles at the daydreaming* Best way to get through a work day, eh?

Jan-ah--yes those altenative perspectives or combining events are great ways to go! I love seeing where your ideas came from!

Jenny-Absolutely on the 'what if!'--my first book was a What If...

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

i've gotten ideas form all those things on your list as well. Though i also have video games on my list, but that would be similar to the Movies/TV list

Ciara said...

I wish I had dreams that I could pull from. Most of mine come from day dreams. I was the kid in school the teachers could never keep focused on work. My worlds and creatures were much more interesting than their drag voice rolling on for hours. :) I like this books sex.

Lucy V Morgan said...

Bahaha--I don't know what I love more; the book-heart-vulva pic or the term "book sex." It really is about a mating of ideas.

I usually start with a fantasy. Just a scene (albeit a fleshed out one) and build the world around that. My newest WiP started when I decided I wanted my hero to be a scientist and part Japanese; with my heroine, I wanted her to be part of the British aristocracy, but in a very modern form so I could explore ideas of celebrity and obligation. I chucked the girl and guy together, saw how they talked, mixed in a dystopian idea I'd had for a while about a world where people are almost all plagued with nightmares, and went from there.

GigglesandGuns said...

I'm all for the micro-brew mystery as long I can enjoy a brew while I read.
My WIP came from something in the news mixed with something from the family.

Helena said...

I got my latest idea when I read that serious literary author Justin Corin got a honkin' huge advance when he switched to writing about vampires in his novel Passages. I figured if he could write about a virus that creates vampires, then I'm gonna tell a tale about... Okay, so I'm too embarrassed to tell anyone just yet. But I'm having fun writing a weird story that just kinda came to me.

Michael Offutt said...

Your posts are always so naughty.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Your inspiration is unique!
Mine came from movies and TV. Not all that original.

Cold As Heaven said...

I get the inspiration from things I see or experience, people I talk to, stuff I read >:)

Cold As Heaven

Hart Johnson said...

Sarah-I actually had a computer game influence once upon a time, but I never finished it... possibly because I couldn't master the game! *is lame*

Ciara-too funny. I wrote a lot when I should have been listening, but my imagination seems to need a pen in hand.

Lucy-I SO WISH I could do fantasy and world building! Alas, my imagination is is as dry and the pages I read, to badly misquote Professor Trelawney... My skill is as a puzzle master... take a lot of unrelated things and mix 'em up fresh.

mary, you are ENCOURAGED to drink a micro while you read! I may even make some recommendations!

Helena-too funny--no reason to be embarrassed! If people love it, you win!

Michael, naughty YES, evil NO. *blinks*

Alex-actually, i don't think I'm alone! And it sounds like you came up pretty fresh on your remix, anyway.

CaH-But not Led Zepplin? Though I guess a lot of THEIR inspiration was mytholody (Norse mythology no less) so maybe you've read some of that...

Cold As Heaven said...

Hehe. I like Led Zeppelin, and I've read a lot of Norse mythology. The old Norse gods are more cheerful and entertaining than the grumpy Christian god >:)

Cold As Heaven

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I have a book that's about to release that came from *you*! :) That's right, y'all--Hart had this amazing dream that worked out perfectly for someone writing a culinary mystery! So dreams really do come true. Ha!

erica and christy said...

You forgot about "shower inspiration". That's where I get all mine from. The fact that most of my narrators are young boys is a testament to the fact that everyone keeps their eyes shut in the shower. :)
erica

Laura Josephsen said...

LOL, great analogy. ;) It's true, though--my books totally have to be conceived and then gestate for a while before they're ready to come out.

Inspiration comes from all over the place--until it sparks some small thing or a character and then eventually a novel might come out of it.

Will Burke said...

I get a lot from conspiracy theories and alternative histories. I find Eastern riligious stuff inspiring too, except for the "all of life is suffering" part. If this is supposed to be brutally unpleasant, then I don't seem to be doing it right.

Jo Schaffer said...

My ideas come from all of the above. And definitely take on a life of their own. Sometimes I'm sure my MCs wonder where I came from. (=