Real life is stranger than fiction. This statement is generally true, and I’m glad, because a lot of my story ideas are sparked by headlines/posts/comments I see on social media. I have a document pinned to my desktop, and its sole purpose is to collect the random things I see and thoughts I have that could one day blossom into stories. I’m inspired by stuff my friends post on Facebook, like: “Entire Family Lives in a Giant Tree House” or headlines on Yahoo! like: “What Would You Never, Ever Do Again, Even for a Million Dollars?”
The tree house one…okay, I have to admit that premise would be a stretch for a contemporary romance novel, even though I write humor. But the second one? I think the million dollars challenge would make a great romance novel, because I can put a hero or heroine in that scenario and ask what if?
I saw this article the other day about an app called Tinder. Apparently, it’s for singles who want to meet people while traveling. Sightseeing, dinner….fill in the blank. It could be completely innocent, or not, depending on the traveler. Judging by the comments at the end of the article, most people thought it was a horrible, dangerous idea and/or just an excuse to hook up with a stranger. However…given the right angle, it would make a great romance novel!
I’m not saying I’m going to use the tree house, a million bucks, or Tinder as is—and maybe not at all. But when two or three great headlines + imagination come together, a romance novel can be born. For my latest release, PERMANENT INK, my heroine Blair is trying to win a state-wide parade Fourth of July parade contest so she can make a name for herself as an event planner and propel herself out of tiny, weird Celebration, NY. When she meets sexy Ben, who’s hosting a tattoo festival the same day as her parade, all bets are off the table. Part of what inspired me to write about a parade is, of course, the name of the town where the novel is set. The other part was an article I read about confetti at the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade. Some of the confetti (not official Macy’s confetti) was made up of shredded police reports and other confidential information. Oops. There isn’t much confetti in Celebration’s parade, but there’s a lot of crazy stuff going on behind the scenes.
How about you? What do you think would be a great romance novel? And I’m SO curious to know…what would you never, ever do again, even for a million dollars?