My neighbour asked me, the other day, where the stories I write come from, and I told her they came from my head. She seemed bemused, and then she asked how can one idea blossom into a whole novel? I decided that a blog post could go some way in answering her queries.
I have moved around a lot during my lifetime, ranging from Marlow Bottom, York, London, Norwich and the South of France. I have also worked in places such as Tower Hamlets in London. All of this has enabled me to experience different aspects of life and community, as well as different cultures. People watching is a favourite hobby of mine, which can make me a tad anti-social at times.
Working with young offenders inspired my novel ‘The Divine Pumpkin’. My time working in the community and in young offender institutes (prisons) gave me ideas for characters and setting. The character for the young offender is made up from several young girls I worked with, and the other characters are created from people I know and have known – although the actual characters are fictitious – no one could ever recognise themselves!
My daughters inspire me with their enthusiasm towards life; from sports day (pictured above), playing football matches every weekend to volunteering in the local science museum. Just like the blackbird prodding the lawn for worms, there is an attitude in the household to throw yourself into the tasks ahead – and to see the positive side as much as possible. Having said that, we have our share of teenage strops and messy rooms, but that’s family life.
I read the paper, novels,watch the news and go for coffee with my friend – all of which give me ideas. A story about nothing much could be planted in my brain, only for it to blossom another day into a scene development or characterisation. Even time day-dreaming can be inspiring, as I let my mind wander and create images for me – I always have a notebook to hand.
Inspiration can reveal itself anytime and anywhere. As an author, I make mental notes of sights, sounds, smells, taste and touch, to add depth to my writing. I hope to convey the setting in a novel and make my characters likable or annoying – whatever their role may be in the story – so that the reader can sink into my book and take themselves off into the fictional world I have created.
I hope you’ve found some inspiration from this.
Happy Word Flow One & All.