Every writer dreads the question, “Where do you get your ideas?” Especially in person. Especially at a microphone in front of many, many persons (if you are fortunate enough to be offered a microphone, that is).
I don’t have a pat answer for that question, but I have a pretty good concept of why some characters, scenes and plot elements stick in my mind: Because they’re ridiculous.
Yesterday, the University of Cincinnati Bearcat mascot was arrested in Pittsburgh for aggravating a snowball fight. This situation in and of itself is ridiculous. But what sticks in my mind is what happened afterwards—the backup mascot took over for the rest of the game.
The BACKUP mascot. What is it to be the poor backup mascot? Do you get a partial college scholarship instead of a full ride? Do you get sent to the LaCrosse and water ballet competitions while the REAL mascot is on the football field? (These are serious questions, by the way—if you are or know someone who’s been a backup mascot, please contact me. I beg you!)
Any time my expectations are subverted, perverted or turned upside down, I get curious. I want to know more—and I’m more than happy to make up any missing details (my father calls it telling “Keri Tales.”)
In Stone Kissed, my statues talk to Delia, the heroine. Once I established that rule in my fictional world of Stewardsville, Virginia, it opened up all sorts of questions. What does a six-hundred year old armless bust think of the generations of people who “own” her? And if we squishy mortals keep dying and are replaced by others, who, in fact, owns whom? Our attitudes about property might be ridiculous to creatures who are much more durable than we.
I get my inspiration from a gasp of surprise. I’m fascinated by absurdity. I love taking questions to their illogical conclusions. In my books, no matter how dark I get, you’ll always find elements of humor. I wonder what it would be like to have abs so hard, chiseled and tight that it hurt to belly laugh? Hmm…
When Delia Forrest talks to statues, they talk back. She is, after all, the last of the Steward witches.
After an arsonist torches her ancestral home with her estranged father still inside, Delia is forced to sell the estate to pay his medical bills. Her childhood crush, Grant Wolverton, makes a handsome offer for Steward House, vowing to return it to its former glory. Delia agrees, as long as he’ll allow her to oversee the restoration.
Working so closely with Grant, Delia finds it difficult to hide her unique talent—especially when their growing passion fuels her abilities.
But someone else lusts after both her man and the raw power contained in the Steward land. Soon, Delia finds herself fighting not just for Grant’s love, but for both their lives…
To read a free excerpt and/or preorder Stone Kissed, visit http://j.mp/stonekissed
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