Tuesday, May 11, 2010

New Beginnings

By Robin Kaye

The theme for this month is new beginnings and since I’m beginning a new book and a new series, it seems apropos.

For me, the beginning of a book is the hardest to write since I’m usually still learning about my characters. It’s as if I’m feeling around a strange room filled with furniture in the dark, searching for the light switch or lamp, and trying not to kill myself in the process.

Normally, I know my hero/heroine, or both from one of my previous books but not in this case. While Hunter, my hero, was a character in Yours For the Taking, he was a very small secondary character. He may have had a line or two, but I knew what he did for a living, what he looked like, and everything there was to know about his family, yet Hunter was kind of an enigma

Unfortunately, I knew nothing about Toni, my heroine. She just popped into my head one day in all her goth regalia, and introduced herself. I knew what she looked like, what she wore, and how she sounded, but it took a lot of exploring to figure out who she was and what the hell she was doing in my book.

I know you must think I’ve gone off the deep end—not that the thought hasn’t crossed my mind. My sanity is always up for debate. I often wonder if what I do is normal, but hey, I figure since it’s not something I can change, why worry about it? Right? I begin every book by putting the hero and the heroine together (usually on the first page), and after a ton of time spent pulling my hair out by the roots, having too many false starts, day dreaming, and doing way too much procrastinating, I write the world’s worst first chapter, toss it the garbage, and start again. Amazingly, after I toss the chapter, the words flow like wine at an Italian wedding. I figure all that time spent pulling my hair out and procrastinating must have done some good because now, three chapters and a synopsis into Hunter and Toni’s book, I’m in love with my story and my characters. That same, all encompassing love you feel at the beginning of a romance.

Every morning, I can’t wait to start pounding out the words and see what Hunter, Toni, and the rest of the characters will do and say. This is what I love about my job. Every day as a writer is a new beginning. Which probably explains why thus far, writing is the only occupation I’ve had that doesn’t bore me. It’s also what keeps me beginning new books. I’m excited to meet new characters, fall in love, and root for the couple to find their happily ever after.

So tell me, what is your favorite part of reading or writing?

12 comments:

  1. As a reader, the best part to me is getting to know the characters and how they interact with each other. You come to feel you know these characters and look forward to the next book to see what new adventures or problems they encounter. Good luck with the new book and series.

    Mason
    Thoughts in Progress

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  2. My favorite part of writing is the book signing. The book is done, it's out there and people are looking forward to reading it. ;)

    Enjoy your day with Hunter and Toni!

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  3. I love those moments when some trait or talent that a character was given on a whim turns out to be very important to the story, even though I didn't realize it at the time. Great post, Robin! Here's to new beginnings!

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  4. I think what I love about reading is also what I sort of hate--the ending! But there really isn't anything more satisfying than finsihing a great book and it ends in just the right place. I recently had this experience with "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. The characters had all developed, the story reached the climax and the denoument was perfectly graceful.

    Good luck on starting your new series, Robin!!

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  5. I love to read because it's time when I can relax. It forces me to sit down and focus on one thing.

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  6. Robin,
    I'm with you--that journey of discovery when it all comes together and you can see the HEA in the distance and aren't really sure how you're going to get them there. That never, ever gets old. Enjoy the new series!

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  7. Hi everyone~

    Thanks for stopping by!

    Mason Canyon~ Thanks, I'm really loving Hunter and Toni.

    Judi - LOL I like the book signing too. It's great to have a finished product, but of the whole writing, my favorite is the beginning, even though it seems to be the most difficult.

    Cheryl~ Don't you just feel brilliant when that happens? LOL Sometimes I don't even notice it, and then one of my CPs will point out the payoff and I'm always amazed. Is it Jenny Cruise who said that books are all written in our heads, it's just our job to unearth it without screwing it up.

    Danielle - As a reader, I have a love hate relationship with "The End" too.

    Shana - I'm a moving reader. I catch a page in line at the grocery store, or while I'm stirring the pasta, waiting for a school bus, or while the kids are doing homework in between their questions. The only time I'm able to really focus on one thing at a time is when I'm writing, and even then, I'm always having to stop and write a blog or check the blog...

    Marie~ That's exactly it. I love that!

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  8. Oh Robin I loved this post. So glad of more stories to come. From what I've read you're normal - for a writer LOL. I have 2 faves: When I start a new book, the moment it grabs me is such a high. If I'm lucky it's on page one.
    The other is when it's a complicated plot & everything ties up neatly at the end - kind of the receiving end of Cheryl's comment. Best book for that: Daring Time by Beth Kery. She had 2 parallel stories that tied up all neat with a bow. Happy Writing Bella.

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  9. Hi Mary~ I'm so glad you liked the post, I wrote it while I had a fever so I sent it to a friend and asked her to make sure it made sense. LOL I don't make sense usually, but especially when I'm sick.

    I'm having so much fun with this new book--after I got past the first chapter, that is. I'm hoping you love Toni and Hunter as much as I do.

    Ciao, Bella~

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  10. My favorite part is falling in lust...er, love with a new hero! Reading or writing, doesn't matter. I love that part best of all!

    Tawna

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  11. Great post, Robin, and nice to learn a little about your process since I love your books so much! My books always come to me as a first page, with a situation or sometimes just a sentence that sets things going, so that's always my favorite part. Everything gets torn apart after that, but that first page usually stays the same. My other favorite part is when the characters take on a life of their own and start determining their own actions. Then I can really enjoy "watching" the story unfold!

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  12. Tawana - Oh yeah...when I started writing Hunter, a man of few words and big actions, I literally started drooling.

    Joanne~ Thanks for the compliment. When I wrote Romeo, Romeo, I had a dinner scene in my head, it started the entire book but was cut. With Too Hot to Handle, I had a scene where Annabelle finds her fiance the undertaker, having sex with the make-up lady next to the dead body of Mrs. Ragusa, that got cut. God it was funny, but still it was cut. It seems to be the story of my writing life. At least when I tossed the first chapter of Hunter's book, it was pure crap. It makes it much easier to cut pure crap than it is to cut a great scene that just doesn't need to be there.

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