Today I’m hosting a good friend of mine as she shares her writing process with you, Sylvie Grayson. I hope you’ll give her a warm welcome, 🙂
My name is Sylvie Grayson, and I was so pleased to be invited to take part in the Romance Writing Process Blog Tour to talk about how I write. Jacquie Biggar generously asked me to join her in this effort. Jacquie is one of my writing critique partners and I love to read her work. I am always excited to find out where her characters are going next. She also gives me great feedback on my own work, a generous writer friend.
You can find Jacquie at –http://jacquiebiggar.com
And now a little about me, Sylvie Grayson, and why I write!
What are you working on?
My current work is a story called Suspended Animation, where an ambitious young hockey player is reluctantly dragged home because of a crisis to discover his father is too ill to run the family trucking business, and it’s about to go under from a load of debt. At the same time a young woman has loaned her money to be invested in a trucking business but when her fortunes plummet, she needs it back. Her only option is to approach the business owner. The scene when these two, the hockey player and the young woman, meet really tickled me because they are polar opposites and the air crackles with tension.
How does your contemporary romantic suspense different from others in the genre?
My heroes are busy guys who are trying their best to make a go of their careers. They aren’t perfect but they work hard and play hard, knowing life can throw them a curve unexpectedly, and it always does. My heroines are smart, usually independent minded women who like to do things their way and have a plan for their lives. When these two meet up, the sparks fly, especially if they are already driving on a collision course. Then I mix in a bit of intrigue and suspense in the shape of a bad character and unforeseen events to up the ante and make things really interesting.
I try to stay away from the classic scenarios – big businessmen who enter into shady deals to make a lot of money, or high flyer politicians who work for their own interests to gain wealth or influence. I feel those have been overdone, and it’s time to look for more interesting and inventive plots.
Why do you write what you do?
I have a varied and out of the ordinary background and I think that comes through in what I write. My father was a story teller, played the accordion and mouth organ, and loved to sing ballads. My mother was a painter, writer and a respected poet. So I come by the wish to tell stories honestly. I also have a background in business, entertainment, travel, startup companies, you name it. So I like to write about those things.
Life is never easy, I don’t know anyone who has sailed through without a hitch. So when I begin to throw the hitch into the mix, the leak in the lifeboat, or the thief in the scenario, it just gets more interesting and exciting. The suspense in ‘romantic suspense’ gives the love story a special impact.
How does your writing process work?
I’ve written about five or six books now, and the process has evolved. Because I also have a job, I write when I can find the uninterrupted time to do so. I usually start with an idea about the characters and the situation they’re in. As I mull it over in my mind, their personalities evolve and I start to see why they are doing what they do, and how their goals are at cross purposes. Then I work on getting them together.
When I write, I usually know where I’m going with the story. But the story can surprise me, and take me in a different direction then I planned. I find the characters come alive and soon have a mind of their own. It takes some special handling as the book evolves to stay on course but allow the hero and heroine a voice in their own story. It’s what I love to do.
Next up –
Now please let me introduce one of my fellow authors, Helena Korin, who has agreed to follow on this blog tour. Helena loves to write about the Regency period and she does it well. When I read one of her scenes I feel I am there, in the stifling ballroom with the overdressed attendees and the rigid social rules.
Helena Korin was born in the beautiful city of Prague in the Czech Republic. At the age of four she came to Canada and grew up in Toronto and Vancouver. She completed a B.A. degree in history and English, then married a fellow student, a forester. She saw much of Canada and lived in forestry camps in Alberta, the Maritimes, and B.C.’s north. After eleven years of marriage and two children she and her husband divorced. This led to another move to Kamloops in B.C.’s cowboy country.
Working as a reference assistant in a public library she navigated the challenges of single parenting and read every historical romance that came her way. She longed for the time to write her own. Retirement and a move to Vancouver Island finally made this seem a possibility. Joining the Vancouver Island Chapter of Romance Writers fueled her dreams and provided practical lessons in the craft of writing. Trips to Prague, England and Turkey in the last few years have added inspiration and fanned her love of history and fascination with life in the past. She has written one Regency novel and two novellas but is unpublished as yet.
You can reach Helena at email@example.com