I honestly had a difficult time with this question for a couple of reasons. There were many times when I sat down to start this blog post that I started writing about my influences instead. I started writing about my introduction to fantasy with Cinderella. I bowed my head to those nights that my dad and I would stay up to watch Star Trek Voyager together. That’s all well and good, but it’s not what you asked for. I consider inspiration to be something that I keep coming back to, because it makes me want to write. I apologize if this turns into a miniature Pinterest board.
When I was younger, I was sick a lot. I would have to call my mom to come pick me up from school rather frequently, and my parents were starting to lose a significant amount of income because of it. So, one day, my mom came home with a home terminal (that’s what she called it), so she could telecommute. And her computer was of course way better than mine, but what’s most important, and the point of this story, is that she had a program on her computer called Webshots. It was this program for your desktop where you could download these amazing pictures, and it would rotate them for you as often as you wanted. My mom had all of these fantastic ones of landscapes, waterfalls, flowers, and cute fluffy animals.
I don’t use the same program today, but it’s the same idea. I have about 150 pictures from the internet that rotate every hour. I, like my mom, have landscapes, mostly of mountains, forests, and waterfalls since those features occur most often in my novels. I love color contrast. I love light.
My current favorite picture is of the Seven Sisters waterfall in Norway. I wish that I could cite the photographer.
In addition to that, I have also used Photoshop to put together a picture of what I believe my characters would look like together. It’s probably my biggest source of inspiration. I can’t tell you how many hours that I spent putting it together. Once again, I don’t own the rights to the individual images. In case you’re wondering who the actors are, they are Nathan Fillion, Jewel Stait, Hattie Morahan, Dwayne Johnson, Misha Collins, Natalie Dormer, Taylor Kitsch, Matt Czuchry, Michael Clarke Duncan (may he rest in peace), Erin Way, Eddie Spears, and Steve Byrne.
I know that I’ve already posted my soundtracks for my novels. However, those didn’t include ANY of the instrumental music that I love and adore. These are written down here in no particular order, and you may be interested to know that I walked down the aisle to the first song on this list. I’ve also highlighted the songs that I love the most.
Ghulees – Anne McCaffrey, Tania Opland & Mike Freeman – Sunset’s Gold
Over Hill – Howard Shore – The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
The Fellowship – Howard Shore – LotR: Fellowship of the Ring
Orchard House (Main Title) – Thomas Newman – Little Women
This is Berk – John Powell – How to Train Your Dragon
Emma Opening Titles – Thematic Pianos – The Music of Jane Austen
Dawn – Various Artists – Pride and Prejudice
Piano Lullaby – Mark Mancina – August Rush
Dear You (Piano Cover) – Higurashi no Naku
River Flows in You – Yiruma – First Love
Inside the Tam House – Greg Edmonson & Alan Steinberger – Firefly
The Tudors Main Title Theme – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
Healing Katniss – James Newton Howard – The Hunger Games
Forbidden Friendship – John Powell – How to Train Your Dragon
Henry Meets Anne Boelyn – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
Jane Seymour’s Theme (Composer’s Sketch) – Trevor Morris
Behold the Great King of England – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
End Titles – Rachel Portman – The Duchess
Cantiga 166, “Como Poden Per Sas Culpas” – I Ciarlantani – Alfonso X
Scarborough Fair – Celtic – Celtic America
Nonsuch – Anne McCaffrey – Masterharper of Pern
Gatheritza – Anne McCaffrey, Tania Opland & Mike Freeman – Sunset’s Gold
Equinox – same as above
Kingdom Dance – Alan Menken- Tangled
Julie-O – Amy Sue Barston – Memories and Souvenirs
Suite No. 1 in G Major
Fate and Destiny – Patrick Doyle – Brave
Concerning Hobbits – Howard Shore – LotR: Fellowship of the Ring
Henry and Anne – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
Katherine Stripped of Her Jewels – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
The Execution Ballet – Trevor Morris – The Tudors
Bari Improv – Kaki King – August Rush
Kara Remembers – Joohyun Park – The Music of Battlestar Galactica
Begin Again – The Piano Guys – The Piano Guys 2
Bittersweet Symphony – Thomas Luxton – The Ballads
Beethoven’s 5 Secrets – The Piano Guys – The Piano Guys
My Immortal – Lindsey Stirling – My Immortal Single
Waterfall – The Piano Guys – The Piano Guys 2
Movies and TV-
My dad has always referred to the movies I watch as “my favorites”. When I love a movie, I love a movie. Most of them include some sort of voice-over narration that make me want to write.
Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)
Sense & Sensibility (2008)
You’ve Got Mail (1998)
Harriet the Spy (1996)
Pride & Prejudice (2005)
Little Women (1994)
I watch these movies more than any others because of how they aid my writing process. No matter what kind of mood I’m in, if I play one of these movies, I want to write more than anything.
I really hesitate to put anything here, because pretty much any reading makes me want to write. I am planning on doing an influences entry too, so I don’t want to bore you repeating myself. However… Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern is my favorite novel of all time and is one of the most inspiring novels that I’ve read. It’s magic every time I read it. I love that it shows a classical Pern. I love McCaffrey’s writing style. It’s not too fast or too slow. There’s just enough detail. I’m engaged every minute that I’m reading. And the end of it is simply gut-wrenching. Nothing happens like you expect it or how it’s “supposed to”. It’s magic! In fact, I partially credit this novel for bringing me out of my funk in between Winged and Foiche De.
Yes, I am a huge fan girl when it comes to Anne McCaffrey, may she rest in peace. If any of you are considering reading Pern, I don’t actually recommend starting with Moreta. You either have to start with Dragonflight or Dragonsdawn. Dragonflight was the first in the series and Dragonsdawn is the first chronologically. Moreta is the worst novel to start with.
I’m sure there is more, but writing this blog post has made me want to write some more. I wonder why! And I must answer the call before my little brain explodes.