3 Things… that turn thoughts into stories.

This week’s topic at the PLC is “3 Things that inspire us from my daily lives.” In the interest of NOT writing a mushy post that only I would be interested in reading, I decided that the fact that my husband and son inspire me to write absolutely goes without saying, and am choosing three other facets of my life to talk about.

1.My best friend…

…herein referred to as Ren.
(I am a Stimpy, natch.)

Ren is my First Reader and the logical half of my brain. One bullshitting session with her over beers always brings my crossed stars into alignment, and she thinks about my writing even when I might not be. A sample of our daily dialogue, from today’s texts:

Ren: I hate touring places with realtors. Fuckin mouthbreathing rabid catfish.

Me: They have too many teeth.

Ren: IDK why but that sentence keeps bringing some horrifying mental image that won’t quite birth itself to the misty outskirts of my mind every time I think about it. Keep that one for TIK book 2, would you? Super creepy.

I will, Ren. I will. And yes, we really do text stuff like that.

(Apologies to any realtors reading this. I’m sure you are not at all scary to you. Also, my own realtor was a wonderful, perfectly normal human being blessed with the usual number of teeth.)

2. My environment. Yes the dusty, dry, merciless desert landscape outside my window informs my work, more in mood and language than anything else. But what really sticks with me are the little things I notice in my daily life, like today, I took my toddler to the Sanrio shop, and the sole male worker there remarked with some wonder that I was allowing my son to touch the toys, because most families who come in make a big stink about the boys not touching anything. It’s a “girl store,” you see. As James ran around gleefully hugging a fluffy Hello Kitty backpack, a few families did come into the shop, moms with big sisters and little brothers in tow. Every single one of those little boys looked at James’s backpack with overt longing. One even asked me, “dat for me?”


Just a little thing I’m not going to forget any time soon.

3.The books I read and shows I watch. Art isn’t created in a vacuum, after all. The project I am working on now, Monsters, seemed to pop into my head from nowhere, but after considering it, there are some obvious, direct inspirations:

Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan.

-the performance of a particular actor in one of the Harry Potter movies (can’t say which one, it would spoil it for my betas). I always enjoyed this character in the books, but having seen all of the movies umpteen times, something about the performance began to fascinate me.

-…and since I just started watching Dr. Who at a frantic, sleep killing pace (thanks to Amy N. and Netflix Instant) one of my characters seems to have acquired a jot or two of Tenth Doctor in his personality. (But he’s not ginger.)

So, I have great friends. I try to get out of the house on the regular. And I read and watch a lot of the best stuff I can get my hands on. And that’s how I stay inspired.