It happens occasionally to the best of us. The idea of picking up where I’d left off on my next manuscript — or any new story — struck me with a combination of writer’s block and dread, which was a sure sign I needed to take a break.
It’s interesting what can trigger creativity again. In this case, it started with a conversation with my father about my books. I showed him a copy of “On the Scent,” which is available in paperback in the UK (and which my wonderful editor Charlotte sent me a copy of), and my you-need-to-get-your-head-out-of-the-clouds-and-pursue-a-real-career 82-year-old dad actually looked impressed. For the first time, he revealed something to me that actually put a lot into perspective. My retired police office father, the man who has always been practical and encouraged me to be practical and get my head out of the clouds, was a dreamer in his youth. As a young man, he pursued songwriting and even had aspirations of being an author himself.
“I always wanted to write a Western novel,” he told me. “But to print it, they said I had to pay them money. There was no way I could afford it.”
|A little younger than I see him, but meet Connor.
I’ve also been using my writing hiatus to do more reading (or listening, considering my reading these days comes courtesy of audiobooks) and movie watching, mostly thanks to Netflix. Nothing makes me want to write more than experiencing a good story, and I’ve been lucky to have found some good ones in both book and movie form lately.
For the past few weeks, I’ve actually been itching to get back to my unfinished manuscript. For anyone who has read my psychic detectives series, yes, this is Connor’s book. Almost every review “Spirited Away” has received has mentioned the “hunky demon slayer/ghost talker dude” who those readers are anxious to learn more about. Talk about pressure.
This past weekend, I made time to sit down and enter his world again. Connor is one of my favorite characters to write, and it feels good to be giving him his own story. I have no idea if readers will like that story; the book also isn't contracted, so I have no idea if my editor will want to publish the story, but I hope to finish it by the end of January. Sorry — I have too much overtime at the day job to bump that deadline up.
In the meantime, I sure am having fun Googling images of hot, young men to match the image of Connor that's in my head. So far, these are my favorites! Slap some tats on the guy, and he pretty much nails it.
Readers: What about you? How would you describe Connor based on the glimpses you've had of him in "Something Wicked" and "Spirited Away"? Pictures in the comments are more than welcome!