In the Beginning

When someone realises you’re a writer, one of the things they are always interested in is how you find the subject matter for your story.
For me, it usually starts with a place that interests me. From there I jump to the main character, and put her (or him) into that place. It must be someone who fits in the place, and it doesn’t happen as quickly as I’m writing this.
In fact, I mull over my character for quite some time. She – let’s say she, as my main character is most likely a woman – she sits in my head for a long time until I get to know her. Then I play ‘what if’ and put her into various scenarios, until I find the one that she likes best. Oh yes, she has the say!
My characters come to life in my head, and as I write the story, and it progresses, I learn more and more about them. Sometimes they surprise even me, with their response to a question or a situation.
As the story comes to life my characters take over my life. I come to love them – yes, even the bad guys, for they add the spice to my story – and when I reach THE END they have become friends and I am reluctant to let them go!
When I started to write about Kitty in ‘An Independent Woman’ I planned to do a trilogy, with Kitty as the main character in the first, in the latter half of the nineteenth century, moving to her daughter Joy in the early twentieth century, and ending with Joy’s daughter in the wild 1920’s. But Kitty won’t let me put her to bed, and so she is still an important character in ‘A Liberated Woman’, along with Joy, and we still haven’t left the nineteenth century.
Lucy Now I can’t lose either of them for the next book! Where are they going to take me? That is one of the beauties of writing, I don’t know any more than my readers do!


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