This post is to help Liz out and promote her book on this blog tour. Her most recent book Tiddly Jinx is out and I’m trying to help get the word out about it. Please check out her post she sent and feel free to go buy the book if she seems interesting!!
The Writing Process: Do you use real life in your books?
One of the first questions people ask me when they find out I am a novelist is “Do you use your real experiences in your books?” One would think with the number of times I have been asked this (most recently yesterday by my aunt and uncle who are visiting) I would have an easy answer, but I don’t.
I cannot speak for all fiction writers, but what I personally find is that I both use real life and I don’t use it. You see, I write mystery and paranormal romance. I have never been involved in a murder investigation and I have yet to meet a vampire (fingers crossed). There are certain ways however that real life comes into play in my fiction writing.
First, people will request to be in my books. I do not generally put people I know in real life in my novels, but I have had many requests. Normally when creating a character I will build him or her from the ground up. I might borrow traits from people I know, but the end product does the resemble any one person. However, if someone asks if they can be in one of my books and there happens to be an opening, I will put them in it. In one of my series, The Easy Bake Coven Series, the individuals in the coven of witches are made up of four girls I went to high school with. I did my best to capture characteristics of each of them which makes the writing both challenging and fun because I have known most of these women since kindergarten.
Second, I find inspiration everywhere. I know a lot of authors say that and most of the time it makes you want to roll your eyes and say thanks for the non-answer, buddy, but it is true. I was driving home one day and saw this woman standing on the corner with a stroller and a group pf preteens or teenagers around her. Logically, one or two of them probably belonged to her and she was talking to them, as any mother would. In my head, however, she was a drug dealer selling drugs out of a baby stroller because who would ever check the stroller. This is often the way book ideas are born for me. For example, The Ninth Floor is a mystery about a haunted hospital where one floor has been closed to the public due to unusual occurrences. I got this idea from a ghost tour I was on in Arkansas. The man was talking about rumors about their hospital and my brain spiraled off into a never ending “what if” cycle. By the time I got back to my hotel I had the first line, the basic plot, and the ending all worked out.
Third, actual occurrences will sneak into my book every now and then. It happened the very most with the first book I wrote which was a mystery named Dark Corners. It was about a woman who lived in a seemingly haunted house. Some of the ghostly experiences she had were things that had happen to me. There is a scene where Ella (the main character) is taking a nap and she hears someone come into her house, greet her dogs, and then walk down the hallway. That did happen to me when I was in college. I was napping with my dogs and the front door opened. The dogs took off barking and ran to the door. A man’s voice greeted them by name then he walked down the hall. I didn’t open my eyes, choosing sleep over talking to the person who I thought it was. However, later when I was awake I discovered that the person I thought it was had never been there. To this day I still do not know who was in house. Creepy.
Other than these ways, most of my novels are strictly imagination. One of the best tools I have as a writer is I listen to other people when they talk to me. I love hearing their stories and the things that are happening in their lives because I never know where the next idea will come from. Writing has made me a student of life and awoken an endless curiosity about other people.
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URBAN FANTASY/PARANORMAL ROMANCE
The Guardian Trilogy: Secrets
Easy Bake Coven
Hungry, Hungry Hoodoo
Ollie, Ollie Hex ‘n Free (coming this summer)
The Jinn Trilogy: Ember
Inferno (coming soon)
Vestige (coming soon)
Dark Obsession (coming soon)
The Ninth Floor
Christmas Yet to Come (Baker Christmas short story)
MANY AUTHORS CLAIM to have known their calling from a young age. Liz Schulte, however, didn’t always want to be an author. In fact, she had no clue. Liz wanted to be a veterinarian, then she wanted to be a lawyer, then she wanted to be a criminal profiler. In a valiant effort to keep from becoming Walter Mitty, Liz put pen to paper and began writing her first novel. It was at that moment she realized this is what she was meant to do. As a scribe she could be all of those things and so much more.
When Liz isn’t writing or on social networks she is inflicting movie quotes and trivia on people, reading, traveling, and hanging out with friends and family. Liz is a Midwest girl through and through, though she would be perfectly happy never having to shovel her driveway again. She has a love for all things spooky, supernatural, and snarky. Her favorite authors range from Edgar Allen Poe to Joseph Heller to Jane Austen to Jim Butcher and everything in between.