Finding Inspiration

Iceland is not the most obvious place for a writer of contemporary romances set in the heartland to find inspiration, yet now that I’m home, I can’t wait to write.

The disconnect between my vacation location and what I write would be less noticeable if I switched genres.  The eerie expanses of lichen covered lava rocks could easily inspire a sci-fi adventure.  A mystery writer might, figuratively speaking only I hope, bury a body deep in a glacial crevice. Those are not my stories. Nonetheless, I returned home inspired.

The gushing waterfalls, chatty cows outside my hotel, and unfamiliar echoing bird songs gave me a greater appreciation for the sounds surrounding us when we turn off man-made noise. Vacations can offer an opportunity to slow down and appreciate our environs. Whether you are a writer or not, I think we all observe our world in a different way when we are on vacation in part because we know we will have to tell friends and family about what we saw.

As a writer of contemporary romances, I find inspiration abounds when I bring that vacation mindset closer to home. This technique works best when I apply it at inopportune moments.  I have created a manuscript out of an incident with an airsick bag and a baby. Another work in progress stems from a woman wearing four inch heels in a muddy field.

I found inspiration for my September 17th Crimson Romance release, The Winter Fairy, on vacation. At the hotel playground, my then five year old daughter pitched a fit. In the midst of flailing arms and legs, a story was born.  My daughter’s temper has nothing on Eloise, the tantrum prone teeny ballerina who tests her widower father Carson at every turn.  Will her dance teacher Penelope inspire Eloise and Carson to heal their broken hearts?

You can find more that inspires me at www.lolakarns.com, but for now, I want to know what inspires you?

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6 Comments

  1. […] Please come check out my thoughts on inspiration, where I find it, and where I don’t.  http://crimsonromanceauthors.com/2012/07/19/finding-inspiration/   As always, I’d love to know what you think. Share this:FacebookTwitterPinterestEmailLike […]

  2. What a great article, Lola! Way cool, I’ve always been fascinated by Iceland, the geothermal sciences there and especially their techno music. Love it. And yes, while on vacation we do see with different eyes. Thanks for the reminder to enjoy!

    • I streamed a lot of Icelandic radio to prepare for my trip.

  3. I love imagining places where you could stash a body – wait, what? Okay, so I have a bit of the mystery writer in me.

    Beautiful picture.

  4. You paint a beautiful picture of Iceland, Lola! Isn’t it true that we find stories everywhere!

  5. It’s true that every trip we take builds new experiences that may, or may not, appear again in our writing. Even if they are never used, it is nice to have a stash of knowledge from which to draw on when we sit down at the laptop. Thanks for sharing. I’m going to keep that in mind on my next trip and remember to gather the seeds of inspiration as I go!


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