After my editor asked to see the ideas I had for the Ohio series, I realized I needed to do some fast searching.
But I couldn't just look for any old World War Two story. I knew it had to be something I could become truly excited about.
To start I hustled over to Google and entered searches along the lines of World War Two and Ohio. Really high tech, right? I also hopped over to the historical societies in the largeer cities. And I prayed. It was amazing to watch God lead me to the right sites and the historical hooks. I’d hit the site and soon turn around with a squeal and tell my husband, “can you believe what I just found?!?!?”
I found a top-secret war project hidden in a company in Dayton. I love the idea of spies and secrets, so it was an immediate plot – and that book releases in November. The third idea gave me fits until I remembered that there was the All-American Girls Professional Softball/Baseball League during World War Two and beyond. While there weren’t any Ohio teams, dozens of Ohio girls played in the league. A perfect plot for the heroine I envisioned for the third book. And that story releases in the spring of 2010.
Once you’ve found the hook, you still have to research and eventually stop. Generally, I immerse myself in that particular event. I’ll buy and read books on the subject. Usually, I can find at least one.
If possible I do a site visit. Museums are a wonderful resource, and for me there’s always been something important about seeing the setting. That may not be possible for all my books, but I can find videos, guides, etc., that help me understand the flora and fauna, what the weather patterns are like, and the other details that help the setting come to life.
Then it’s time to step back and dream. Invariably, I’ll learn there are more details I need. But if I never start writing, I’ll never have a book. And that is the desired end result.
Good luck as you work on your books!