My eighth book, Impossible Ransom, is being released today by Entangled Select Suspense. My ninth book is with my editor, awaiting final edits. My tenth manuscript is in its final draft.
After several published novels, people tend to ask how an author keeps coming up with ideas for new books. The answer is simple: story ideas are everywhere. A writer only needs to look closer at the events happening around her.
The real question is not where to find ideas. Ideas are easy and plentiful. Culling through tons of dirt for a gold nugget is the part that’s difficult.
The sad truth is that many stories won’t interest anyone and shouldn’t be written. Some have no middle and are more a short story than a novel. Some ideas are like false gold, they look good on the surface and maybe through about forty pages but don’t have a glow when held up to the light of reality. Finding the gems I can be passionate about for eighty-thousand words requires a lot of forethought.
When I first started writing, every idea seemed worthwhile. But after a few thousand words, I’d wonder where to go and how to keep the story from disintegrating. Some of those false starts are stored in a drawer. Most saw their last daylight in my circular file. Now, I don’t begin writing until I’m sure the idea is good and can go the distance. The concept has to be unique and compelling, something someone beside my mother will want to read. I have to know the characters and like them. I need to know the beginning and the end. The story has to be interesting enough to make me want to sit down and write, make the moments in front of my computer fly by.
If an idea can pass all my tests with flying colors, then the time is right to bring it to life. Quantity of ideas is no problem. Quality is now the key.
For anyone interested, you can read more about Impossible Ransom here.