Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Brightest Heaven of Invention

A writer is often asked: Where do you get your ideas?

J.K. Rowling famously said that her multi-billion-dollar idea for Harry Potter simply fell into her head while riding a train. I was riding a bus when I first listened to Rob Dougan's song Clubbed to Death -- and the idea for an action heroine simply fell into my head:

A hardened, lean, mean woman clad in a leather duster, army boots, and red lipstick. A beautiful girl next door with the war-weary eyes of a soldier. Punching a boxing bag in the dark. Training with deadly weapons. Taking on a small army of henchmen all on her own. Relentless. Unstoppable. On a bloody warpath for revenge.

This potent combination of music and the seeds of a character inspired my girl-power action thriller FURIOUS ANGELS which won Finalist at the Page Screenwriting Awards.

Since then, music has always inspired me in my writing.

I built a soundtrack for FURIOUS ANGELS: To get jakked up and ready to write hyperkinetic action sequences I listened to Linkin Park, Evanescence, Trapt, Nonpoint, etc., and to get in the mood for brooding character moments I listened to my favorite composer Bear McCreary.

Now for my horror script RED SNOW, I turned to eerie, creepy atmospheres from soundtracks for the TV show Dexter, the video game series Silent Hill, and the movie Last House on the Left (John Murphy is a brilliant composer!).

I even made this unsettling painting of Red Riding Hood in black and white woods my wallpaper, listened to John Murphy's track The Boathouse, and I was off and writing more RED SNOW.

Today, I'm writing a murder mystery called HARVEST CHILD set in a small Texas border town. I picked out this dark image of a man watching the sun set over wheat fields as my wallpaper, I'm listening to this playlist mix of westerns and film noirs... and dammit if I don't get inspired.

Where do you get your ideas?

1 comment:

  1. I get my ideas from watching strangers. I imagine their stories, and then I write them.