Ooo! Yesterday I asked for more blog suggestions…and Heather Hilmer…you won the Jumping Beans!
Now, if you seen Heather’s suggestion yet, this was her blog suggestion for me…“I always wonder how you get in the mood for writing your passionate romantic scenes and/or how you think up your dreamy men!! Is there certain music you listen to when writing to get in a certain mood, or certain movies or shows that have inspired your writing?” It’s a great prompt! I just hope I can do justice to it! Ahhhh!
I’ll start out by confessing something…when I’m writing romantic scenes (especially kissing parts) I have to close my office door…because I sit there at my computer and blush my guts out the entire time! I’m not kidding! I get all flustered and blushy and grinning and nervous…so I have to make sure no one’s going to wander past my office door, glance in and see me all goofy and blushing!
As far as how I “get in the mood” for writing my “passionate romantic scenes”…well, usually I start by literally announcing to my husband and son that I’m going to be working on a ‘difficult’ scene, so I’m closing my door. I also put my cell phone in another room so that I don’t have anything close that might distract me. Next I pull up my iTunes playlist that I have previously created for whichever book I’m currently working on. My iTunes playlist for any given book always includes one, two or three songs that ‘put me in the mood’ so to speak for that particular hero and heroine’s romance. For instance, I wrote the entire text to Saphyre Snow with only one musical track set on repeat. It played any time I was working on that book and nearly drove my family nuts! For Saphyre Snow, I listened to Track #15 (Your Hands are Cold) from the 2006 movie version of Pride and Prejudice. Seriously! I had that one piece of music on repeat the entire time!
But writing to only one song isn’t my normal habit. As I said, I do make a playlist…but most of them include far more than one song. Still, there is usually only one or two songs I listen to while writing the romance scenes. During The Tide of the Mermaid Tears, I listened to recordings of Ocean Waves from some Sounds of Life CD most of the time. But whenever I was writing the scenes between Ridge and Ember I had one song on repeat…Flightless Bird, American Mouth by Iron & Wine. I’m not sure why that particular song was in my heart for Ember and Ridge (it really doesn’t fit the time period or anything), but it was. To me it was there theme. Does that make sense? For The Trove of the Passion Room, I chose three songs for Maxim and Sharlamagne…I Remember You for certain scenes, as well as I Can Dream, Can’t I. During the most romantic/passionate scenes, I listened to a song entitled Insatiable…but on a low volume because some of the lyrics are…um…well, the push the envelope if you know what I mean. There are other songs on that “soundtrack,” too…All the Cats Join in by Benny Goodman, Casper’s Lullaby from the movie Casper, and The Gypsy by the Ink Spots. The Look of Love by Diana Krall was Jagger and Tabby’s theme in A Better Reason to Fall in Love, The Lights of Albuquerque was one I listened to while writing The Time of Aspen Falls, and for hottie with a naughty body Sir Broderick Dougray (i.e. A Crimson Frost) I had a playlist packed with selections from Brian Crain! FABULOUS soundtrack! (Obviously, since he’s one of the people I dedicated the book to!) Let’s see…to give you more info than you want or need…I’m Yours by The Script was Jesse and Cozy’s kissing theme and Hey There, Li’l Red Riding Hood by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs was Jesse’s ‘flirting/prowling’ song for me! Ha ha! I’m so weird!
Heather also asked how I think up my dreamy men. Well, I hope it doesn’t disappoint anyway, but I draw from real life…my husband, sons, uncles, grandfather, my dad (I get a lot of smart aleck one-liners from my dad…though I have to change some of the…um…colorful metaphors here and there) and other wonderful husbands, fathers, boyfriends…good men I’ve known who are truly admirable, etc. But admittedly…Kevin is my main inspiration. So so so many of the romantic one-liners in my books, the humor, the flirtations and physical attributes of every hero come from a base of Kevin-ness. It’s true! It may seem corny, and you may wonder if I’ll ever run out of inspiration because Kevin is only one man…but I promise…the inspiration he gives me is boundless!
Now as far as “movies or shows” that influence me…well we cannot overlook her majesty, Jane Austen! Or the Queen of Gothic Romance, Victoria Holt as far as authors and books-to-movies go. I’m sure that Jane Austen BBC movies, etc. inspire me…more along the lines of just helping be to see the life-styles etc. I like period pieces like that…westerns, etc. They do assist me in capturing a ‘feeling’ of the era I’m writing in. Even Anne of Green Gables and the spin off series Road to Avonlea have helped me to write some visual descriptions such as cloths, buildings, etc.
Did I answer your question thoroughly enough, Heather? I hope so! Send me your snail mail address so I can have your jumping beans sent to you!
And now…a new contest! Leave a comment here and I’ll pull a name out of my hat next week as the winner for a CD of the soundtrack to Pride and Prejudice! You’ll LOVE it! It’s a gorgeous soundtrack! Okay? Want a sample? Sure! Here’s the infamous Track #15…my Saphyre Snow inspiration! It starts out very quietly…and it’s after the first crescendo that I really like it!