Saturday, March 22, 2014

Writing - A Personal Journey

By Danita Minnis (Guest Blogger)


Writers, like many other creative people, come to it from very personal paths. My journey to becoming a writer was a natural progression in my development. I have always been a passionate reader. As a child, I entered fascinating worlds in the books I read - the more imaginative, the better. I remember adults in my family would always remark on my vivid imagination but I thought everyone daydreamed and made up stories like I did. I should have gotten the hint I was a writer when I wrote a short story at the age of ten about a girl in the Victorian era. The scenes were so vivid, they kept bombarding me and I just had to write them down. Next, I was writing poetry, another clue, but life gets in the way sometimes and you can’t see the forest for the trees. After a serious push for a singing and song-writing career, I decided it was time to become just as serious about my story writing.

As I explored the writer in me, I started analyzing my writing style. I found that creating sketchy outlines work best for me. I don’t like to be held to an ending or even a character because things change, and change again, if I need them to. It’s better for me to remain flexible because I never know where the characters are going to go. I usually write the ending of my story first, pages of it, and then bring the characters to that conclusion. Sound backward? Definitely, but if you understand writers, you know we have our own way of doing things.

It’s exciting when I am hit with that first character. Physical characteristics and their location jump out in a key scene and spur me on. Next, I throw a monkey wrench (usually paranormal) into whatever outcome this character wants, whether it’s to have another character or a situation resolved. The supernatural is one of my strongest inspirations. I love the possibility that there is more to life and will always explore this theme for a story. Demons, ancient cults, ghosts and witches are just a few of the things I gravitate toward. Sometimes they are secondary characters, which are great vehicles to produce surprises. The mystery lover in me can’t do without those hidden agendas. When I’m satisfied with all my conflicts and their resolutions, I tie them all together. If I’m successful, the results range from murderous obsession to lustful ghosts - and plenty of romance.

I am steeped in romanticism, which is great for my historical scenes. I don’t know if it’s due to my love of history, art and music – being a singer definitely has something to do with it. I actually have to watch this romantic bent for my contemporary scenes. Otherwise, they can end up sounding like a romantic tragedy. But wait, my stories are romantic tragedies most of the time.

I write about the flawed hunk who can’t resist the strong-willed beauty. In some way they are enemies, whether it be through lineage or circumstance. Their being together means hell for both of them but they do it anyway. Dark fairytales, I love them. A hero with a painful story the reader can feel. It creates such a yummy conflict. I hate him, but I understand why he did it…

Being in love with love, my personal goal as a writer is for the girl to get the guy in every lifetime.

Love Entwined, A Cardiff Novel by Danita Minnis

Blurb

Amelie’s goal is the top of the jewelry designing world. Her orderly life comes undone when jewelry tycoon Roman steals her away on assignment to a remote English estate. He wants Amelie all to himself but St. Clair Manor’s ghost has waited for her much longer than he has.

An unseen gunman takes a shot at Roman and he blames a business rival. But Amelie and Roman are to blame, for falling in love 200 years before in a time neither of them remember.

From the heartbreak of pre-Revolutionary France to modern day corporate wars, Amelie and Roman uncover a history of blood jewels, lust and demons.

When Amelie discovers her inner witch she learns the real reason she was summoned to St. Clair Manor. Il Dragone will kill to get her back. Amelie will kill if they do.



Excerpt

Later that night, Amelie passed through the kitchen on her way to the pool.

She went through the gym, catching a glimpse of herself in the mirrored walls. She was a mermaid in the incandescent green two-piece with a diaphanous sarong. She loved it and would have bought it for herself except that it probably cost as much as one of her business suits. Work attire and jewelry were the only things she could see spending that kind of money on.

Roman had guessed her size. The man was an expert; he knew how to make a woman feel beautiful.

That was dangerous.

She was no match for his subtle prowess and he was too well versed in things she had not played at long enough to know her own capabilities.

When she opened the door, he was already in the pool swimming laps. She stood near one of the benches lining the walls. The underwater lights bathed the room in a bluish-green glow and illuminated his retreat. His strokes were long and powerful, breaking the silence and echoing in the cavernous room.

He swam toward her and she took off her flip-flops. She was the wallflower while he was…Godlike, more than a man should be. He climbed out of the water and stood in a puddle, pushing dark, wet curls out of his face. Her eyes followed the rivulets running down his chest over sculpted abs and finally over his feet. Everything about him was oversize.

He walked toward her in black swim trunks and her skin burned crimson as reality confirmed what her dreams had already conveyed; the man was superbly endowed.
“I see you found your way down.”

She wrapped her arms around her waist, and managed to stop just short of turning back the way she’d come. “I was watching you swim,” she said unnecessarily.

He grabbed a towel hanging on a hook. “You look beautiful.”

“Thank you for the swimsuit.”

“I should be thanking you.”

She stood mute, but unfolded her arms.

He gestured to the shower in the corner. “Why don’t you get wet? It will help you get accustomed to the water.”

Aware he was watching her while he dried off; she twisted the end of the wrap in her fingers.

He picked up a bottle of water and sat down, leaning against the tiled wall. He took a long drink before saying, “Of course you could always swim in it.”

“Of course not.” She took off the wrap and crossed over to the steady stream of water.

Closing her eyes, she blocked his eyes out of her mind, but still felt them as she turned in a slow circle under the stream sluicing her breasts. She felt his eyes as the water traveled down her waist, glancing off her hips in droplets that danced in puddles over her feet.

When she turned off the water, she felt much calmer.

He held out a bottle. “Water?”

“No, thank you. Do you want to get back in?”

“Your wish is my command, Beauty.”

He kept pace with her underwater. In a steady rhythm, he glided next to her. He needn’t have worried; she was a good swimmer.

They reached the other side and she started back the other way with the butterfly stroke. They swam together and met at the deep end, holding on to the side and facing each other.

She waved her legs in the water, feeling so much better after exercising away her nervous energy. “This is nice.”

“Where did that come from?”

“What?”

“That genuine smile on your face. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen that before.”

She made a face.

He grinned. “There is nothing like a few laps in the pool before bed. It helps clear my head.” He followed her line of vision to a beach ball floating nearby.

Grinning, she swam off in that direction. She held the ball up over her head and took aim.

He chuckled. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.”

Shaking one waterlogged lock of hair out of her face, she asked innocently, “And why is that?” She treaded further away, still brandishing her weapon.

“I might have to come after you.” He hadn’t finished his sentence before she threw the missile. It was close, but she missed. She looked around for something else to throw.

“Nothing but pool water left, Beauty.”

She treaded away. “It didn’t hit you.”

“Ah, but that was your intention, and now you will pay the price.” He dove underwater.

She squeaked and started swimming in earnest to the other side of the pool. By the time she saw him swimming underneath her it was too late. He rose up out of the water and grabbed her around the waist. She tried to get away, but weakened by laughter she stopped struggling and leaned against him.

He took her to the side of the pool and they caught their breath as their legs wove together. The gentle lapping of the water against their bodies broke the silence.

“Give me a few days’ practice and I’ll be chasing you.” She laughed up into his face, looking forward to it.

Roman wasn’t laughing. He moved closer and his lips brushed hers.

Feeling relaxed and exhilarated, she didn’t stop him, but parted her lips. He slipped his tongue into her mouth, rolling it over hers in long, lazy strokes. She slid gently into bliss as he deepened the kiss.

She wrapped her arms around his neck, and her nipples hardened against the hair on his chest.

When he cupped her buttocks and moved against her, a languid moan escaped her lips.


Love Entwined is available on Amazon http://amzn.com/B00F2M3FZI

About Danita

Danita Minnis grew up singing and once thought she would do that all her life. She soon found writing just as fulfilling and writes paranormal romance. She loves mystery, mysticism, the fantastic and the fey. She has published The Cardiff Novels, a series about one family’s trials with vengeful demons, a legacy of ghosts and mysterious blood jewels. She is currently working on the third novel in the Cardiff series, which introduces the Cardiffs’ connection to ancient vampires.
Danita is a member of Romance Writers of America. She is a lover of chocolate, a good, scary movie, kittens and pups - especially Siberian Huskies. When she is not writing, she exercises her lungs at her son's soccer matches and their favorite theme park, because everyone knows it's easier on the stomach to scream your way down a roller coaster.

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2 comments:

Lisabet Sarai said...

Greetings, Danita! Welcome to Beyond Romance!

I've been writing ever since I learned the alphabet. It's funny - nobody every taught me how to write a story (though my dad was a fabulous story-teller). It just seemed to come naturally. I never thought I'd actually be a published author, though. That wasn't one of my goals. Just sort of happened.... though now it seems inevitable.

Danita Minnis said...

Thanks for having me on today, Lisabet!

I would say your authorship was pre-ordained. It's a wonderful thing. :)

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