Monday, February 9, 2015

What Do I want to Write About?

You can find my latest blog about the value of research on Marilyn Meridth's excellent blog site:

"The Musings of Marilyn." Marilyn's a multi-published author of mystery novels. Her blog site address:
Website address: As you can
see below, I've added her to my list of favorite blog and websites.

Today we'll discuss what direction we want to take.


It's funny. (not ha ha) everytime I work on “Legacy of Danger”(since the 1990's) I get overly annoyed with my writing and plotting and work on something else. “In the Arms of the Enemy” and Waterlilies Over My Grave” (both published) were the two recipients of my frustration.

So can I get over this? REALLY? Well then...

What do I really what to write about? Do I want to concentrate on a new novel? (what a novel idea—no pun intended)Do I want my stories to contain messages or be for pure enjoyment? Do I enjoy: short novels, long novels, short stories, non-fiction articles (or even fictional articles.)I do enjoy blogging and contributing to other author's blogs.

Back to the novel: If I write this story, what topic would be of interest to me and my readers? A story about horses and horsemen—a subject I know something about? Music, maybe an opera singer? How about setting my character as a would-be writer? Subject matter is important. What about the setting? A church, a ranch, a resort in the mountains? Where do our would-be readers enjoy vacationing?

Should the story be a romance or a mystery? Romantic suspense? Paranormal? Do you see a pattern of wavering unsureness here? Maybe I should take one of my published books and continue the characters' story with a series. An amateur writer-detective or team who lives on a horse farm and solves community crimes. I love amateur detectives. After all, I grew up on Miss Marple and Lord Peter Whimsey.

Should I just start writing? Or should I do what I advocate other authors do. Make up character sketches, scene descriptions, and work on a goal, motivation and conflict-resolution. If I don’t and just panzer (write off the cuff of my mind) it can get sticky. At least for me. Green eyes turn blue in chapter 20. An avid lover of Shakespeare turns into a book hating TV watcher by mid novel(nothing against TV. I'm a Criminal Minds junkie.)You can be both, of course.

A murder mystery needs a good, suspenseful plot. Our mm (murder mystery) needs a dicey detective (generally with issues of his or her own,) perhaps a venomous victim and surly suspect. Should the victim be a nasty human being like we see in so many crime novels? Maybe not. Some of the most heinous of criminals love their mothers. One of the saddest murders occur when a perfectly nice man or woman kills a nasty, blackmailing or abusing sot, then either commits suicide when near capture, or is caught. Sometimes we root for the killer.

Maybe it’s time I got out of the romance-romantic suspense genre and went straight mystery. A good ol’fashioned “who dun it.” Yep, I'm thinking in that direction. I'm thinking love of horses, a protagonist--a woman who I wish I could be like, a criminal who I've probably met, but with whom I hope I never have to interact, two teenagers and a hero who's not quite on top of the protagonist pool, but someone I wish I could meet--and marry at the end. It's my story. I can meet and manipulate anyone I want.

This may be just a muse. A pending brain storming session from me to me and anyone who will listen. But, it's also the beginnings of an idea. Maybe my next novel. One thing I do know. I need to focus on one genre. Going back and forth isn’t getting me anywhere. If we (I) go in too many directions we get lost in the forest of ideas. Find that one gorgeous oak tree and make it beautiful.

That’s all for today.

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