Archive for December 20th, 2007

Where Do You Get Your Ideas?



It’s the question I get asked the most. I generally tell people that I pick them up from WalMart on the clearance rack. But because it’s Christmas, because I hear that there’s a red-suited guy, (who by the way could use a membership to Weight Watchers) a man they claim knows if I’ve been naughty or nice and who they say can see me while I’m sleeping, (and that scares me a little) well, for that reason, I’m gonna tell the truth. And the truth is . . . I don’t have a freaking clue where those suckers come from. I’m just glad they come.





Sometimes they strike me when I’m in the shower. Why, just this morning, belting out tunes of Jingle Bells and lathered up with some soap that promised to reduce cellulite, I was blessed with an idea. A woman’s male poodle has been possessed by her ex boyfriend’s ghost who died from embarrassment when he got caught trying on the girlfriend’s panties. The heroine’s best friend is a pet psychic, who has an English Mastiff who pines after the heroine’s poodle. (Hey, I didn’t say all the shower ideas were usable. Sometimes they hold a kernel of a decent plot, other times they need to be spritzed with anti-bacterial soap and washed down the drain. Quickly.)



Occasionally, I believe that ideas are gifts received by those who are nicer than naughty. Which is why I went to see Santa at the mall and explained that the police did eventually drop those charges against me. The effort was worth the embarrassment. I mean, how neat would it be to wake up Christmas morning to find a New-York Times best-selling plot under the tree all wrapped up with a bow around it.





Only problem with my trip to see Santa was after I sat in the Jolly ol’ Soul’s lap explaining how I came to be crouched down in the middle of Pizza Hut, on a bad hair day, with thousands of dollars scattered around me, the would-be Santa suspiciously started looking less like Saint Nick and more something that should be chewing on some hey. But just in case plots could be delivered under the tree by a cow-impersonating Santa, I left my change of address and told him my name was Nora Roberts. Hey…she has to get those ideas some where.




However, digging deeper into my well of knowledge (which is sometimes pretty shallow) I decided ideas come from a writer’s paradigm. Sure, these stories can be sparked from a good-looking meter reader, who I’m sure is really a guy in the Witness Protective Program, to an article on the mating rituals of Black Widows—I always like a hero who attempts to beat the odds. But what makes my ideas unique is the way I view the world. And I guess that has a lot to do with the way I was raised to view the world.



And how was I raised? Well, besides just being down-right southern, meaning that I ate food that they now swear will kill you, ran barefoot during the day and caught lightening bugs in the night, I was reared by parents who looked at life a little differently. When my mother accidentally stole that car, or lost her teeth during her flight with Continental Airlines, and when my father accidentally built a bomb, we simply put on our humor glasses and got through the situations.




So my own paradigm leads me to write books that are little quirky with characters who find themselves in wacky situations—a lot like my parents and duh, even myself. And while I don’t exactly know where my ideas come from, I’m waiting for them to show up in the shower, bacterial soap in hand. I’ll be eager to see what presents arrive under my tree. And don’t worry, if one arrives with Nora’s name on it, I’ll do the right thing and return it…a beautifully ribbon-wrapped plot about a heroine and her possessed, cross-dressing male poodle. And oh heck, just in case, I’ll give those clearance racks at WalMart a good going over.





Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy my humorous stories of romance and suspense. Divorced, Desperate and Delicious, my first single title, has gotten rave reviews and has even been taken back for another printing. I feel a bit like Sally Field in her Oscar speech, “They like me, they really, really like me.”




My second book, Wedding Can Be Murder, will be out in June of 08. In December of 08, I’ve got the sister book to DDD, which is titled, Divorced, Desperate and Dating.






And because I love to hear from readers, I’m offering a prize of a Christie Craig Sexy, Suspenseful & Seriously Funny T-shirt, to one lucky poster on this blog. So go ahead, leave me a comment, ask me a question, or tell me about some of your wacky situations you’ve found yourself in. Hey, I could always use them in my next plot.






Thanks…and I hope everyone has a very merry holiday.




Christie Craig



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