|Click the pic to enlarge! *Wicked laugh*|
You see before you the cramped disaster area that serves as the focal point for my writing. There are actually two other computers off the right edge of the picture, as well as various scanners, printers, and other devices. It’s all very cozy and high tech.
And I barely notice how cramped I truly am, since the monitors open up huge worlds to me. Fascinating worlds I can use in my books.
When I stand back to think about it, sometimes it seems strange to write mysteries set in the first half of the 19th century on a computer. But if Jane Austen had access to a computer, I bet she’d use the heck out of it. After laboriously scratching out her manuscripts with a quill pen, I’m sure she’d be the first to exclaim that technology has made the writer’s life a lot easier. With two monitors, I can open source material on one screen while I write on the other. I can twitter and e-mail experts all over the world to get their views on odd little facts. It’s astounding how much easier it is to do JIT (just in time) research than it was even five years ago.
Right now, for instance, I’m deep into the second draft of a new historical mystery, A Rose Before Dying. This book required vast amounts of research not only into the geographical areas around London, but in roses growing in England in the 19th century. In the book, the killer taunts the hero, Charles Vance, by sending him a spray of roses. If Vance can identify the rose, he might be able to identify the next victim in time to save him, or her. It’s not as easy as you might think. Roses have a variety of names and there are many rose varieties that are nearly indistinguishable if you only hold a single bloom in your hand.
The Internet and my own garden where I grow over 100 varieties of Old Garden Roses have given me the tools to write the kinds of books I love to write.
Like so many other authors, the boon of technology has allowed me to dip into a variety of genres, too. While most of my current books are historical romantic mysteries, I’ve also recently contracted for a contemporary mystery, as well as the second book in a line of paranormal romances.
So while my writing space may appear cramped, it is really just the small portal to a vast number of fictional worlds just waiting to be explored. It’s really limitless.
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