Today we have Clare Boston here to talk about her latest release, All That Sparkles. Take it away, Clare!
What inspires story ideas?
One of the most common questions I’m asked is, “Where do you get your ideas?” I possibly sound flippant when I answer, “From everywhere,” but it’s the truth. A story idea can spark from an overheard conversation, a lyric in a song, a snippet of information in a documentary or from a dream. In the case of All That Sparkles, it was a dream that gave me the idea.
I’m one of those people who have really vivid dreams. I can wake up and feel like I’ve been in a live action, full colour feature film, and that’s why I keep a pen and notepad next to my bed.
Sometimes the idea may be a scene, other times a setting or a character. For All That Sparkles it was a scene: an immense garden, an illicit meeting, first love and the idea that my heroine’s father couldn’t know anything about it.
I had this dream back in October 2009 and I wrote down as much as I could remember about it; feelings, images, locations and spent a little bit of time fleshing out the idea until I had my characters and the base of a plot. It wasn’t until 2014 that I realised it was the perfect story for the second book in The Texan Quartet.
The few things that were clear from my dream were:
- Imogen came from a very rich family who were involved in the fashion industry
- She met Christian when she was young and didn’t have any friends because her father controlled who she was allowed to see
- Christian disappeared unexpectedly after a fabulous time together
- When Imogen meets Christian as an adult, he wants nothing to do with her
The only thing from this that changed in the novel was to make Imogen and Christian a little bit older when they first meet – teenagers rather than children.
The rest of the story flowed from there. I generally don’t do a lot of plotting before I start writing. For All That Sparkles I worked out where my characters fit in The Texan Quartet world and had a good idea what happened in the first three or four chapters and then I started writing.
Each time I reached the end of what I had plotted something would occur in the story that would expand to be the next part of the story. I was thrilled when a character walked on the page – just as a bit part, a little bit of dialogue before she walked off and I suddenly realised she was perfect for George, who is the hero for Book 3 of The Texan Quartet. It was a relief because I wasn’t sure what George’s story was going to be, but her small part in All That Sparkles prompted the whole idea for Under The Covers. See what I mean when I say inspiration is everywhere? You just need to recognise it!
Clare is also giving away 5 digital copies of What Goes on Tour, the first book in the Texan Quartet series. Leave a comment or question for Clare to be entered to win. Good luck!