Some writers outline.
Some have a beginning and end in mind, then outline as they go.
Many have the plot, chapter by chapter, all worked out.
There are as many writing habits as there are writers.
Me? I'm a hipster/Googlester.
Keeping in mind that I am writing the sixth book in a series, I'm a step ahead with my main character, Hetta Coffey, and her sidekick, Jan. All I have to do is:
1. Figure out where Hetta is
2. Why she's there
3. What the problem(s) seems to be
4. What the problem(s) really is
5. How Hetta's going to deal with it (them).
6. Do it all without boring the living hell out of the reader!
Keeping a series fresh, book after book, is a problem in itself. Being a big fan of series, I've been a disgruntled reader on occasion, and the last thing I was to do is disgruntle my readers.
Buy Hetta Coffey Boxed Set at Amazon
And therein lies the problem. I can plot and plan to my heart's content, but then, thank goodness, Hetta takes over, sends me into Google research, and then hip-bumps me onto a whole new path.
I admit to being a research junkie, and it has been a road to adventure for Hetta's antics.
For example, in Just Deserts, Hetta lands a job at a mine on the Arizona/Mexico border , and I was all set with where the story was going. Great. But then, while running off the rails during research (which I'm prone to do) I found a blurb in the news reporting Jihadist camps in Mexico! Say what? Who knew some of the indigenous Indians down south in Chiapas were being recruited? Heck, who knew there were even radical Muslims in Mexico? So, I was off on another trail, because if anyone on the planet can unearth—and become embroiled in—a terrorist plot, it is Hetta.
The problem with being a Googlester is, like Facebook, Google is a giant, time-sucking vortex that I happen to find way to irresistible.
Conventional wisdom says, WRITE WHAT YOU KNOW. Okay, at my age (don't ask!) I think I know a lot, but is what I know interesting to others? Probably not. Can I use my own experiences as a launch pad for books that grab and hold a readers attention? Heck, yeah.
I imagine most books begin with authors asking themselves, "What if?"
"What if a young man who finds out he's adopted, and has magical powers?"
"What if, during the civil war, a beautiful young woman falls in love with the wrong man?"
"What if a woman is pushing forty, looking for love in all the wrong places, and buys a yacht as a man-trap." Bingo!
About the Author:
Jinx Schwartz is the author of the award-winning Hetta Coffey series.Twitter * Facebook * website
JUST ADD WATER, first in the series, introduces Hetta, a sassy Texan with a snazzy yacht, and she's not afraid to use it. JUST ADD SALT, JUST ADD TROUBLE, JUST DESERTS,and JUST THE PITS follow her into hot Mexican water. JUST NEEDS KILLIN' is scheduled for July 2014 release.
Her other books: The Texicans (Texas 1806-1836 Historical Western), Land of Mountains, a YA/TWEEN set in Haiti in the 1950's, and Troubled Sea, a thriller in Mexico's Sea of Cortez.
Jinx spends equal time in Arizona and Mexico.
Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small fee is earned when purchases are made at Amazon through the link above. The views, opinions, and beliefs of guest writers are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of Girl Who Reads.