If the question is where I get the ideas for the stories I write the simple answer is…people. All of my writing is pretty much character driven. That is not to say that I’m not concerned with the other elements of literature…plot..setting etc. but these things concern me fundamentally in how they interact with the characters in my stories.
Description as in the case of a beautiful sunset i.e. the watery glow slipped beneath the sea causing the last light to radiate across the shimmering water turning the world for that brief moment into an impressionist painting-works to my mind much more when seen through the eyes of a character. What is the mind-set, the emotion, the internal conflict going on? How does this visual effect or affect the character?
I try to create characters in the context of the story that are believable and real. Even with their quirks, they are the kind of people that you could meet in the course of everyday life. My favorite bumper sticker is…we’re all dysfunctional deal with it…or as Virgil Dalton, the central figure in DEATH AT THE BLACK BULL says, “We’re all broken just in different ways”. I’d venture to say it’s impossible to get through life without this happening. Recognizing this, seeing how each of us deals with the life circumstances we face can make for a very interesting story.
Virgil, who is my favorite character, does not wear his emotions on his sleeve. He strives for balance because it is his job, “to keep the peace” in his little corner of the world. Sometimes this causes him pain, stress all of the things that human beings deal with, but that’s life. What living is all about. He knows this. No one in life gets a pass.