Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My Muse is shamelessly exploiting my child

I admit I can be neglectful at times, when I'm working on a story, but I'm writing my first Young Adult novel and who better to exploit than my teenage daughter, Scarlett? Don't feel sorry for her though. She loves every minute of it.

I read an article online about audio or visual thinkers and it turns out I'm the latter. Finding or creating pictures of my characters inspire my writing and assist in avoiding the dreaded 'Writer's Block'. I know cover artists design the book covers when a story is contracted, but I love to make my own covers. They keep that end goal in sight-getting my novel published and keep me typing away on the keyboard.

I'll go to extraordinary lengths to find or create the perfect photo to fuel my muse. My main character in my current project 'Kindred Spirits' is loosely based on my daughter Scarlett (She even came up with the name Hallow, but don't tell anyone) so it was only natural she be my cover model. Isn't she beautiful? And yes, her hair is really purple.

Splat color washes out in about a month and she likes to change colors frequently, as she goes to a uniform school and it's a creative way to express herself. My younger girls do a streak on each side. Believe me, it does wonders for their self esteem and popularity. Not to mention, they think I'm the coolest mom, though I draw the line at tatoos and lip piercings.

I took her to the cemetary in a formal gown-repeatedly-to get that perfect shot for my cover. She thought that was cool too and added some of the pics to her facebook account for her friends to see. In the end though, a special effect made for a better picture, though the journey was fun. Mother and daughter spending quality time in a graveyard. It's weird, but true. What can I say? I'm a paranormal writer. I don't think like normal people.

I've also been pumping her shamelessly for information about her highschool, friends and teen slang to spin into ideas for my story. I think I may have to give her cover credit if I sell the book after all the hard work and notes she's taken for me. Scarlett wants to be a writer, as well as a million other things, so helping with the creative process has been fun for her and it's something we can do together. Now the question is what should I do with the other five while I finish this novel?