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Monday, 16 December 2013
Guest Post : A Story with a Soul by Jan Scarbrough
I’ve written a few books and stories in my life. Some have taken years to finish, others a few months. When I start a story, I take out one of my plotting worksheets, a conglomeration of various classes I’ve taken over the years, and start filling in the blanks.
I want to know my two main characters and their “core decision” or “motivation.” I figure out their back stories. Since I am writing a romance, I know these characters will end up together, but how they get together, I’ve yet to figure out.
Writers are asked—Are you a plotter or a pantser? For those of you who don’t know, “pantser” refers to those authors who write by the seat of their pants. Because I always start with a basic chart, I never thought I was a pantser until an online instructor told me that I am.
She’s right! If I try to fill in detailed character grids or create a step-by-step outline, my mind clogs up. The ideas get stuck somewhere else. The story is miserable if I overthink it.
My best bet is to take the bare bones and start writing. Somehow the characters start driving the story. What happens to them and how it happens gets fleshed out. I’ve gotten better at it over the years. I’m learning to trust what comes.
My latest romance, TIMELESS for Turquoise Morning Press, was written that way. It just seemed to write itself. I dedicated the book to my psychic medium friend Dale. She told me my spirit guides were helping me write the story. They were having great fun doing it, she said. She even tells me I channel as I write.
I like to think that what my friend says is true, for the ideas come from somewhere, and I’m not sure they come from my mind. The words just flow through my fingertips to the computer keyboard and onto the screen. It’s like magic.
So where does INSPIRATION come from? It’s been a topic of discussion through the centuries. A quick glance at Wikipedia will tell you that.
Inspiration (from the Latin inspirare, meaning "to breathe into") refers to an unconscious burst of creativity in a literary, musical, or other artistic endeavor. The concept has origins in both Hellenism and Hebraism. The Greeks believed that inspiration came from the muses, as well as the gods Apollo and Dionysus. Similarly, in the Ancient Norse religions, inspiration derives from the gods, such as Odin. Inspiration is also a divine matter in Hebrew poetics. In the Book of Amos the prophet speaks of being overwhelmed by God's voice and compelled to speak. In Christianity, inspiration is a gift of the Holy Spirit.—From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
So inspiration can come from God, the Holy Spirit. I like that, for I believe it was from God that I derived what little bit of writing ability I have. TIMELESS is a story with a soul, for it comes from my heart, from my essence as a human, and, I like to think, guided by my teachers in spirit.
A contemporary Gothic romance, Timeless has all the elements of an intriguing paranormal: a resident ghost, evil entities, tragic lovers, and ultimate redemption. Set in Old Louisville, now and in the past, Timeless brings together the elements of history and contemporary New Age belief.
When Beth Abbott receives a surprise inheritance from her birth mother, she travels to the family’s nineteenth century mansion in Old Louisville, now a bed and breakfast. There she meets the resident ghost, a little girl whose crying scares, but intrigues guests. Beth sets out to discover the identity of the ghost and why she appears happy to Beth, not sad.
Jeff Halstead, a man with several secrets, runs the bed and breakfast. But he’s more than that to Beth, and she feels their connection immediately. A psychic medium who doubts his skills, Jeff slowly uncovers the truth of their past lives. Will he be in time to reveal the identity of Beth’s enemy? Will the love they shared in the past follow them into the future?
TIMELESS is a beautiful love story that intertwines two different lifetimes, and Jan has done an incredible job of introducing reincarnation and numerous other ` Spiritual gifts' that we all possess in a clear and concise way that will help you to understand the possibilities, even if they are not in your reality yet.
Our Angels, Teachers, and Guides in Spirit are ever ready to contribute to our daily lives in any way they can, and Jan's `people' around her DID have a wonderful time helping her with this (and her other) books.
Jan Scarbrough is the author of the popular Bluegrass Reunion series, writing heartwarming contemporary romances about home and family, single moms and children, and if the plot allows, about another passion--horses. Living in the horse country of Kentucky makes it easy for Jan to add small town, Southern charm to her books, and the excitement of a horse race or a big-time, competitive horse show.
Jan also contributes to the Ladies of Legend series, a collaboration with writers Maddie James, Janet Eaves and Magdalena Scott. Set in fictitious Legend, Tennessee, these romances bring together the small town family atmosphere so many readers enjoy.
Leaving her contemporary voice behind, Jan has written a medieval romance MY LORD RAVEN, and several sensual Medieval romantic short stories. Her Gothic romance, TANGLED MEMORIES, was a Golden Heart finalist. TIMELESS is her newest Gothic romance.
A member of Novelist, Inc. and the Romance Writers of America, Jan has published with Kensington, Five Star, ImaJinn Books, Resplendence Publishing and Turquoise Morning Press.