Today I have my first guest post. Below please see a great post from M.J. Rose on character inspirations. Her newest book is The Hypnotist which I cant wait to get my hands on.
Inspiration is a crazy thing. I don't know where it comes from but I'm thankful it does come.
My characters are very elusive. They arrive like wisps of smoke. My first inkling about a new character comes as a question. A "what if".
"What if" a man was in an accident and woke up with memories that don't belong to him.
Then I start thinking of what kind of man would that be a conflict for. Who would hate that and fight it.
Slowly a person starts to emerge.
Then I work on their names - for a main character it can take me a month to come up with the right name. And all too often I think I have the right name - then start working on the book and realize I have the wrong name. In The Memorist I wrote the whole book with Meer's name being something else and she was wooden on the page. Then I changed her name and she came alive.
My real work with the characters is an evolution. For three months I don't write a word. Rather I do research and work on my main character's scrapbook. The very process of collecting her preferred poems, swatches of her favorite colors, and petals from the flowers she grows gives me time to find her.
I collect the ticket stubs for a performance of the Metropolitan Opera that she went to, a postcard from her mother's first trip to Europe, a piece of the red and white string on the pastry box from her grandmother's apartment: it's all in the scrapbook.
And only when I've found all the knickknacks of her life and I've done a fair amount of procrastinating do I even think about sitting down to write. And by then, I can't wait
M.J. Rose - THE HYPNOTIST - An Indie Next Pick
Buzz, Balls & Hype (http://mjroseblog.typepad.com/buzz_balls_hype/)
Synopsis from MJRose.com
An FBI agent, tormented by a death he wasn't able to prevent, a crime he's never been able to solve and a love he's never forgotten, discovers that his true conflict resides not in his past, but in a…Past Life.
Haunted by a twenty-year old murder of a beautiful young painter, Lucian Glass keeps his demons at bay through his fascinating work as a Special Agent with the FBI's Art Crime Team. Currently investigating a crazed art collector who has begun destroying prized masterworks, Glass is thrust into a bizarre hostage negotiation that takes him undercover at the Phoenix Foundation—dedicated to the science of past life study—where, in order to maintain his cover, he agrees to submit to the treatment of a hypnotist.
Under hypnosis, Glass travels from ancient Greece to 19th century Persia, while the case takes him from New York to Paris and the movie capital of world. These journeys will change his very understanding of reality, lead him to question his own sanity and land him at the center of perhaps the most audacious art heist in history: the theft of a 1,500 year old sculpture from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
International bestselling author M. J. Rose's The Hynpotist is her most mesmerizing novel yet. An adventure, a love story, a clash of cultures, a spiritual quest, it is above all a thrilling capstone to her unique Reincarnation novels, The Reincarnationist and The Memorist.