It seems lately my fantasy novel has been getting all the love. It was featured here for the Next Big Thing post, here for the Look Challenge, here for the Lucky 7 Meme, and finally here when I had an interview with Taryn for a Kickass Heroines post.
Today we’re showing our ‘Cup of Tea’ side on the blog and giving some love to the Romantic Suspense. Instead of a snippet from the book – you can read one of those here – I thought I’d share with you the inspiration behind the story.
As with all of my stories, this one began with a ‘what if’ moment. There I was, driving my car, minding my own business, when Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Because of You’ came on the radio. I started really listening to the lyrics and questions popped into my brain.
- What if a mother leaves the family, how does that make the children feel?
- What if the daughter is young, say 9 or 10 years old, how would that affect the way she views the world?
- What if that girl pushed herself to be the best in a futile hope that if she was just ‘good enough’ her mom would come home?
- What if that girl grew into a woman who was beautiful, brilliant, and broken?
The ideas were swirling around in my head for awhile before I finally began writing the book. I’d made a hasty effort during NaNoWriMo to get the entire story out, but it felt wrong. Something was lacking.
Jump ahead to May of this year. With the fantasy stewing in the dark reaches of my hard drive, I had the time and inclination to give the story a closer look. I trashed what I wrote during NaNo and started fresh. Page One.
The only thing I kept was the name of the book, and even that will probably change. After 98,000 words, this is what Because of You ended up being…
Elizabeth Bradford is beautiful, brilliant, and broken. Unable to forgive herself for her mother’s abandonment, she strives to be perfect in her career, at the extent of pushing relationships away.
Liam Stirling wasn’t looking for anything more than great sex, but when he meets Elizabeth, he starts to think it’s time to put his bad boy days behind him. Too bad Elizabeth doesn’t feel the same way. Not one to see opposition as defeat, Liam steadily charms Elizabeth until she gives a reluctant yes.
Unfortunately, not everyone is happy they’re together.
A stalker watches their every move, even the most private moments spent in Elizabeth’s bed. The closer Liam and Elizabeth become, the more violent the stalker’s acts. When their best friend is brutally beaten, Elizabeth blames herself.
Consumed with guilt for her friend’s condition and faced with Liam’s unwavering faith in his love for her, Elizabeth retreats into herself. She does what she knows how to do best ~ pushes Liam away.
Not satisfied with destroying their lives, the stalker won’t stop until someone is dead.
It will take a bullet for Elizabeth to realize what love truly means.
It’s a far cry from Kelly Clarkson’s song, but that’s what music can do to us. Fill us with inspiration which allows our minds to take flight and wander among the stars.
Just the other day I was listening to the radio and heard One Direction’s, ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ and I thought, that’s exactly what Liam would say to Elizabeth! She’s a remarkable woman, but refuses to see it because of the damage her mom did when she left.
Here’s Kelly Clarkson’s video for ‘Because of You‘. The story changed a lot from when I first heard the song, but the feelings I feel every time I hear it never alter. It’s a powerful song. Okay, admit it, who else tears up when they watch this video?
Has a song ever inspired a story that you just had to write? I have a friend who always writes to Incubus, I’m more partial to soundtracks or classical, what about you? When you do something creative, what gets your muse fired up? Share with us!