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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Author Insight: Story Secrets

Tell us a secret about your most recent book.

"The idea for my novel, Grace, came from a dream, as I mentioned, and once it came into shape, I knew there had to be part of one of my favorite poems in it. That's never happened to me before"- Elizabeth Scott, author of Grace.

"Spider's real name is Jesse. Someone asked about that on Twitter, and a big discussion followed. I thought they were going to break into Team Jesse vs. Team Spider and tear him apart like Elli did to the snapshot at the pesantren!" - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"The original beginning for Witch Eyes involved a dramatic chase scene in a cemetery.  After a spell goes wrong, Braden ends up running from all the girls on the Homecoming Court, heels and all.  The scene didn't make the cut because, while hysterical, it didn't fit the tone of the rest of the book." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"Even though I wrote Indigo Blues because I love music, the novel was also inspired about how people don’t communicate properly. It deals with what happens when we don’t really let people know how we feel. Sometimes we dance around issues and then aren’t happy with the outcome. It’s about being forthright." - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.

"Let’s see, one thing you don’t know is that we wrote the first draft of Beautiful Darkness before we’d even revised Beautiful Creatures. By the time we’d gone through a year of editing Beautiful Creatures, we’d changed major story elements, and our first draft of the sequel was hilariously out of date. Oh well…" - Margaret Stohl, co-author of Beautiful Creatures.

"My work in progress seems to have lot of secrets from me still, but here's one that's been revealed to me: before I wrote Split, I wrote a fantasy narrative which never turned out.  One of the characters from the fantasy narrative showed up in Bidden. It was great to be able to recycle him." - Swati Avashti, author of Split.

"Originally the murderer in Other was supposed to be a completely different character, who still appears in this draft..." - Karen Kincy, author of Other.

"Hmm—a secret . . .  Okay, here's one: the theater in The Replacement is named after a real place that doesn't exist anymore.  The real-life Starlight didn't look exactly like the one in the book, but it did have pool tables.  The version in the book has a better stage." - Brenna Yovanoff, author of The Replacement.

"Three things: 1.) I wrote The Lost Saint because I realized that my main character had only gotten ½ of what she wanted in the first book—and she still desperately wants both. 2.) There’s an homage in the book to my favorite superhero, Wonder Woman. 3.) A bedazzler makes an (epic and deadly) appearance in TLS that changed the course of the entire book when I got the inspiration (from my best friend) to add it." - Bree Despain, author of The Dark Divine.

"In Angelfire, the main character, Ellie, fights reapers with two sickle-shaped blades called Khopesh, which are a sword-axe hybrid of Ancient Egyptian origin. She also has the ability to light these swords up completely in angelfire, which is a white fire that harms only the demonic." - Courtney Allison Moulton, author of Angelfire.

"Crimson Wind is coming out in December and it’s the sequel to Bitter Night. One of the things that I find special about these books is the comaraderie of the characters. I really enjoy writing the interaction and interplay among the ensemble. It isn’t always friendly, but it’s usually funny. I thoroughly entertain myself when writing them." - Diana Pharaoh Francis, author of Bitter Night.

"Originally, Seth's friend who died was Daniel.  After I read the first draft, though, I decided that I needed the character Daniel active in the story.  I changed it so that the friend who passed away was Isaac instead.  For the first few months after that, I was really emotional whenever Daniel was in a scene; it was as if he'd had a second chance at living but he had no idea." - Mindi Scott, author of Freefall.

"There was a scene I wanted to include in Ascendant in a cave in France -- I purposefully set the story in a part of France known for its cave paintings to include that scene, but in the end, it didn't fit in the book. However, I was able to include a similar scene in 'Errant', my historical short story set in the same world. Careful readers of both will realize there's more than just a superficial connection between the two settings." - Diana Peterfreund, author of Rampant.

"Ariel, Phe's best friend from LA, was originally a much bigger part of Shadow Hills. In the end I think I cut out about twenty pages worth of phone calls between them. I'd still like to introduce Ariel at some point, as she's such a fun character, but it became clear to me that the focus in Shadow Hills was on Phe figuring out who she was becoming. I didn't want there to be too much of an emphasis on the past, since it's a forward moving story. But I think eventually Phe's going to have to take a good hard look at her past, and at that point I'd like to have more of a resolution to the Ariel character and Phe's issues with her." - Anastasia Hopcus, author of Shadow Hills.

"It was inspired by true events." - Michelle Hodkin, author of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer.

"In Autumn Winifred Oliver Does Things Different, Autumn’s older sister Katie is based on the older sister of a dear friend.  Katie’s two best friends are named Shirley and Linda, two of my wonderful writer friends who critiqued numerous versions of the manuscript.  And Selling Hope is set in Chicago because I have many relatives there, and the city holds a special place in my heart, as it does for Hope." - Kristin Tubb, author of Selling Hope.

Stop by Thursday to learn secrets about the rest of the authors books!
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