Sorry for the terrible pictures, I really need a better camera, but I wanted to show my writing wall for my latest book, Trevelyn's Shimmer, before I take it down and start on the next one. I haven't done a wall before mostly because I never had the space, but having done it I must say it's been a huge help. The drawing above shows the details of the balloon that my main character Marie discovers. It really helped to zone out on it between breaks while keeping my mind in the right place.
My main character Marie travels far and wide and meets a musician who sings about the Blue Ridge Mountains in Tennessee, which are part of the Great Appalachian Valley. Since I've never been there, it helped to have this map.
I'm a huge fan of Google Maps as they assisted me with plotting Marie's course over the United States and Europe. Researching parts of this novel allowed me to learn more about the Mediterranean Sea which I've never been to but would love to go one day. Learning and studying new topics about the world is one of my favorite things about writing.
Now that I'm done with Trevelyn's Shimmer, I'm starting on a couple of other projects and working on some short stories for adults. Writing short stories is really hard for me but I enjoy the challenge. I read quite a few short stories, and while I give major props to the creative writers out there who create them, it seems like many stories are about turmoil, or loss, or death and heartache, especially the ones that win awards. I know these stores are hard to write because I've tried, and my recently finished book is no cakewalk either, so that's why I'm determined to try and write something funny. Maybe writing humor is harder and that's why so many people stick with other themes, but laughing feels good, don't ya think?