For today's Buccaneer post, we're supposed to
For those who haven't read my entire backlog of blog entries, here's a brief sum-up:
I had a recurring nightmare for years. And I mean like twenty years. Every once in a while, it would come back for a visit, haunt my nightmares for a while, and then disappear for a few months at a time. When I had a particularly horrid bout with the nightmares last summer, in desperation I decided to write the whole dream down. I figured it might help work through whatever issues kept my brain from rehashing the nightmare every night. If it didn't help with the nightmares, at least it would explain my increasingly sleep-deprived state to my husband.
For some reason, when I wrote the dream out, the characters who terrified me the most became the heroes of the story on paper. I saw the entire nightmare inside-out, and the things that scared me suddenly had a story of their own. And they weren't scary anymore. They became my friends. I gave them a purpose, and they rewarded me by shielding me from the crazy nightmares.
After a few days of writing, I realized I had an awful lot of story to go over from a single nightmare. Since the act of writing stopped the dreams, I kept writing. I wrote two epic fantasy novels with those characters.
When I was about to plunge into the plotted and planned third novel with them, I realized that what I had written so far was not terribly commercially viable. In reality, those two novels taught me how to write something commercially viable (I hope!). Instead of continuing a series I didn't think would ever sell, I figured there was no harm in trying to write something that might sell.
I have no idea where Thalia and her crew came from. One day, I envisioned a lone woman walking through a park in Boston after dark, and fighting off an embarrassingly poor attempt at a robbery by spinning around and walking on like nothing happened. Thalia was born.
While I keep writing for myself, because if I stop the nightmares might come back, I'd like to think that twenty years of horrible nightmares might finally bring some happiness to others!