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Thursday, June 13, 2013


Deep into proofing the galley for "Dabblers" the print edition. As I read through it, I remember bits and pieces of inspiration for it, and I realized how much of it comes from my own life experiences. For example, the house Stefanie inherits from her uncle was modeled after a house my husband and I owned back in the 90s, although our house was not on a hill and did not look out on a lake.

Last night, storms raced through northern Illinois, and I recalled a storm that occurred at that other house. My husband had been away on a business trip, and the lightning and thunder had been constant and intense, just as in a scene from "Dabblers." Elsewhere in the book, a strange structure in the woods, with stone slabs set into the ground, comes from another house where I once lived. Here is a photo of what inspired that element in the book with the stone slabs partly visible at the bottom:

There are many more things from "Dabblers" that mirror my own life, some of them too intensely personal to share. I've often heard the advice, "Write what you know," and so I do indirectly. But still the best part of writing fiction is making things up. 

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