Sometimes You Just Need To Get Out Of Town

To a writer, a “creative well” is vital. It’s the source of your ideas, inspiration, and creative juices. It should be nurtured, fed, and cared for carefully. My creative muse, on the other hand, seems to have fallen in and drowned in that well. She’s nowhere to be found. AWOL.

Or maybe, after eleven books, my creative well has simply run dry.

Not a happy thought for a writer.

I’m desperate to replenish that well. So desperate, in fact, that I felt I had to do something radical.

I’ve lived in California and Florida for more than half my life. I can’t even remember the last time I saw snow. So last weekend, I hopped a plane to the first place I could think of that would be the polar opposite of the warmth and palm trees I’m used to.

Boston, Massachusetts.

Turns out, the word ‘polar’ opposite was an apt description. I spent a bracing, 43-degree Saturday wandering around Boston Common, Faneuil Hall, the Old North Church, and some ancient cemeteries, just soaking up the sense of history and the freezing 19-mph wind. It was the complete dichotomy of what I’m used to.

I was hoping to shake up my mindset and hopefully my muse. And – who knows? – maybe my shivering helped a bit with the shakeup, because I came back with a few ideas.

I’m a historical author. Usually I write Roman and Victorian romances, but who’s to say I couldn’t do an American historical? I mean, what if Paul Revere’s horse had gone lame on that fateful night in 1775 and he’d missed warning Samuel Adams and John Hancock that British troops were coming to arrest them? Hmm…Or what might have happened if a bunch of girls in Salem hadn’t claimed to be possessed by the devil and accused several local women of witchcraft?

Alternative histories are really popular on TV and in literature these days.

Of course, I’d have to figure out romance angles for the plots. Maybe Paul Revere stopped at a lonely farmhouse looking for help with his horse and discovered true love. (Note to self: check to see if Paul Revere was married when he made his famous midnight ride…)

Actually, you know what? It doesn’t even matter. My mind is already swimming with “what if” ideas, and that’s magic to a writer!

Thank you, Beantown!


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