Novel Share Saturday is the newest in weekly segments on What A Nerd Girl Says. Saturdays are a day to take a break from talking about all the books I’ve read and focus on my other hobby – writing! In this segment, I’ll post excerpts and passages from past, present and future projects, I’ll share short stories and poems, I’ll give advice and answer any questions and so forth. I hope you enjoy!
This week I’m talking about…inspiration! Where do you get your ideas?! What inspires you?
One big thing I’ve noticed from attending many, many events as both a spectator and an author is that one of the number one questions is, where do you get your ideas from? What inspired you to write that story?
Its often times hard to remember what inspired a story. Sometimes you’ve been working on something for so long and its been through so many renditions, so many drafts, that you forget what originally started it. I think authors often try to remember what inspired them to start a particular story. I know I do, if only to be able to answer that question at events!
Ideas often come from the most random of places – a photograph, a random train of thought while you’re driving to work. Honestly, I’ve had ideas for novels just come out of nowhere, always when I’m working on something else that’s getting hard haha!
I want to talk about three different novels though – The Awakened, which is my first published novel, Legacy, which is the novel I’m working on now and an untitled novel that is a very, very small work in progress.
I first began writing The Awakened back in 2013. It was my first NaNoWriMo novel success and it is my first published novel, the first in a two part series. This is actually the reason I dropped out of college – I wanted to write this novel; it was burning inside me. I would never advocate or pressure anyone to drop out of college – I’m still undecided if it was the best decision for me. Hard to tell since it was over 5 years ago and I like the way my life has turned out so far. But it was what I wanted at the moment and it led to The Awakened.
The Awakened came from two things.
The first is – I was watching The Walking Dead with my boyfriend at the time. I had reached a point where I was sort of over the show; it just wasn’t doing it for me anymore. My ex still really liked it and we watched it every Sunday and, me being me, I pretty much criticized it the whole time. I love to talk back to movies and tv shows, even ones I like. Its just the way I consume that kind of media. Anyway, my ex got really fed up with it and said that if I didn’t like it, I should do it better. Well, I like a challenge and I definitely took it as one.
The second is – I used to do writing challenges with some friends of mine, to keep ourselves going. The hardest thing about being a writer is actually writing. We will find literally ANYTHING to do other than write. So I used to send out random prompts, either ones I came up with myself or ones I stole off the internet, and the handful of us would write short stories and send them to each other and it was GREAT. I loved it. I did a Halloween themed one that started off with finding a zombie on your front lawn.
That scene really propelled what became The Awakened. I had never ever thought to write anything other than contemporary prior to that. The characters I created in this short scene stuck with me and even though their names, personalities and situations changed, they are centered in that original scene. A version of that scene is in The Awakened now.
The Awakened is currently between publishers right now BUT you can purchase signed copies of it and its sequel, The Sanctuary, directly from me. Just contact me via the contact page.
Legacy is my newest work – I am roughly about 60% of the way into it. I honestly have no idea where the idea came from. I mean it. I have been working on and off on this novel for nearly three years now and I can’t remember exactly how it started.
I know that there has been an image in my mind for ages of a girl sitting in a normal high school class and discovering her baby dragon has sneaked into her backpack. This is a scene that is already written into Legacy and was a super fun scene to write. I have been wanting to write a story where the main character is connected to either Ireland or Mexico – I’m half and half – so the idea of this folklore of Irish women who ruled the skies for centuries just appealed to me big time. The story is so different from what I originally tried to accomplish and the big changes I made are what makes the story work.
I’ve obviously been super super influenced by How to Train Your Dragon. I think Hiccup and Toothless have a lot in common with Emery and Sariah and I definitely take a lot of Sariah’s disposition from Toothless. I want Legacy to be both fun and dark and I think HTYD does a great job of that. I am also influenced by the dragon Kitten in Tamora Pierce’s Immortals series.
I know most people would think I’m influenced by Game of Thrones and I am, to a point, but my dragons are so very different so I don’t take a lot from that.
Untitled YA Science-Fiction Novel
Quite awhile ago, I used to be obsessed with scrolling through the site 9gag before I went to bed. It was mindless and usually put me to sleep. I was scrolling through and found this piece of artwork. I’ve had it saved on my phone since then – 2016 – and I wish I knew the artist! I have no idea if this is fan art for something I’m not familiar of, I don’t know where or when this was created but it inspired me as soon as I saw it. The story completely sprang into my head.
I eventually want to get back to Nadia, an Earthern princess rescued by her AI robot nanny when the robots and cyborgs took over the earth. She is raised her entire life to believe that she is the only human left until her space station is attacked by the robots that eventually tracked her down and she’s rescued by a band of surviving humans. These humans want to rally behind her, a royal figure, to take back the earth from the cyborgs and humans. Its very much inspired by this picture and it is also loosely based on the idea of Rapunzel…very loosely.