Monday, November 30, 2009

Two, Two, Two Questions in One

Since I’m kind of straddling November and December here, I figured I’d answer both months’ questions, starting with my favorite books as a teen…

I couldn’t watch horror movies when I was younger. Even Ghostbusters gave me nightmares. But there was something about reading teen “horror” stories that I couldn’t get enough of. It all started with a book called Eyes of the Tarot by Bruce Coville. It was the ninth book of a series of fifteen books released by Bantam called the “Dark Forces” series. In a way, it was the horror equivalent of what we’re all doing with the Ro Coms in that it was a group of unrelated books written by different authors all under a single theme.

Eyes of the Tarot was the first book that I can remember being totally unable to put down. It was one of those “have to read it in one sitting” books. I still remember lying on my grandparents couch on a sunny afternoon devouring the book. I don’t know why I picked it up in the first place. The only horror title I’d ever read previously was Bunnicula. But the book had me in its clutches and would not let go. With each new allowance, I immediately went to the bookstore to buy every other book in the series, in much the same way that my friends were tearing through Sweet Valley High. I'm pretty sure I've blocked out the tragic sadness of the day I finished book number fifteen only to realize that there weren’t going to be any more.

I still have all the Dark Forces books on a shelf in my office. I know that I’ll never read them again, because they will never stand up to my childhood memory of them. But I will also never let them go. It was those (let’s face it) totally cheesy light-horror tales that inspired me to write for teens.

Now, switching subjects…

As for the setting I need to be in to write, that’s actually changed for me recently. Used to be that I needed absolute silence to write. No music. No people. No nothing. Just me holed up in my office ignoring the rest of the world. Then they opened a small Starbucks literally down the street from me and it quickly became my writing destination. Yes. I’m one of those people hunched over a laptop, sipping my latte that always looks so pretentious. But when I’m there, I don’t mind the music. Or the people. It’s become my office. A necessary office because when I’m in the throes of a deadline, it’s almost impossible to get me to leave the house. This way, I do get out and breathe the coffee-laden air for a welcome change of pace.

1 comment:

Kelly McClymer said...

I know what you mean. I love my Starbucks, but I have to drive there (which means wrestling a car from DH or DS2). Fortunately, my library just opened up their new building *one* block from my house. And, if I need coffee, I can go to a little (non Starbucks) coffee/burrito shop that's two blocks away. It has comfy chairs and WiFi. What more could a girl ask for?