Ah- transitioning an idea into a an actual book. Funny topic! It’s funny, because people who plan to write a book “someday” often think that once you have an idea it automatically blossoms into full-length novel. Ha!
I use a variety of tools to turn an idea into a story. Sometimes I go to Holly Lisle’s website and walk through her create-a-plot or create-a-character posts. I jaunt over to Jessa Slade’s Plotting Guide to remind myself of the details involved with goal, motivation, and conflict. I pull out my notes from Sascha Illyvich’s male point of view class and work through my characters some more. And most recently I’ve dragged up summaries of The Hero’s Journey online and use the monomyth format to plan my scenes.
One of the most useful tools I’ve found for turning an idea of a character into a breathing entity came from Jessa Slade. She advocates creating a motto or a handle for her characters. In moment when I’m not sure how my hero or heroine will react, or I’m trying to figure out what challenge to throw at him or her next, I often fall back on their motto.
In my new release, Mercury Rising, the God Mercury’s motto is, “I can make everyone love me.” His lover Dillon’s motto is, “I’m surrounded by idiots.”
Right off the bat, without knowing anything else about these characters, you get the sense of how they’re conflict is going to play out. One hero will struggle with the need to maintain those around him’s favor, and the other character will wonder why he bothers.
And since I’m talking about Mercury…
You should check out my books when it releases through Ravenous Romance Thursday!
Here’s the blurb:
A born charmer, Mercury the Messenger finds his legendary abilities to win people over challenged by the quarreling attendees of the Deities International Conference and Kibbitz. But his skills at diplomacy are stretched to the breaking point when he discovers his chance tryst is with none other than his assistant – just as his arranged fiancée arrives at the scene.
Dillon Rodriguez, Mercury’s executive aide and a soon-to-be MBA student, refuses to be the closeted god’s side-dish. But when an accident at the conference strands the god in the human world, Dillon agrees to act as his guide.
Traveling from San Diego down the Mexican coast to Cabo San Lucas with Dillon at his side, Mercury experiences a side of life he never imagined. However, if he wants to earn the love of the one man who matters, he must finally stop trying to please every one else.