Happy 10 year anniversary to JMS Books! Thanks for stopping by today. Nicolas is my first story with JMS Books, and I’m really excited to be part of this amazing group of writers. Today, I’d like to tell you a little about my writing process.
Did you know that for my day job I work as a floral designer? I do! And I’ve recently realized that I approach a new design much the way I tackle a new story. I look over the selection of flowers I have available, deciding on colors and textures, which flower will be my focal point, which will be the accent flowers. In much the same way I choose my characters. Who is my main character? Who are the supporting characters? Best friend? Antagonist? Love interest?
Then I pick the vase and start my base of greens, usually Oregonia, myrtle, leather fern. This is my first chapter that I build the rest of my story on, a sound foundation of prominent characters and a hint at the storyline.
Next, I make my structure using curly willow or red huck and add laterals: gladiolas, liatris, bells of Ireland, any tall straight flowers that give the design height and depth. A lot like plotting a story! After I have my first chapter in, I take a little time to jot down a loose outline, where I want the story to go, a mid-point, the ending I’m aiming for, when I want certain characters to be introduced, what happens when, so to speak. But like my flower arrangement, I can pick up and move these flowers/characters/scenes, anywhere I want them.
Here is when I add the color, the heart of the design, the essence of the story. I set my focal flowers where they look best, adding another two or three colors/textures to bring the structure and flowers together into a beautiful, unique design for others to enjoy. Same with my stories. I start writing, building one scene onto another, adding my colorful LGBTQ+ characters like bright splashes of color, plot twists, heartache, happiness, as needed, until the story winds to its ending, leaving me something I can be proud of and share with my readers.
I used this technique while writing my story Nicolas, pulling in elements from all over, weaving them together. I’ve combined the legends of St. Nicolas and Krampus, having the Krampus chase Nico through the centuries, bent on revenge and punishment for a crime Nico committed against him ages ago. Nico travels the world spreading the word of tolerance and love and peace, with Krampus coming after him undoing all his good work. This is a story of how Nico stops running and confronts his nemesis. With the help of his lover, Jamie, he finds the courage to at last bring his conflict with the Krampus to an end. But first Nico must learn to forgive himself, the hardest task of all.
Thanks for stopping in! You’ll find an excerpt from Nicolas below, and also be sure to grab a copy of my FREE story, Off Sides. Happy Reading!
Continue reading Guest post by Dianne Hartsock