Monday, March 23, 2009

Make-Believe Mondays with Jerri Drennon

Today on Make-Believe Mondays my guest is Jerri Drennon.

Jerri, first, tell us a little bit about the manuscript you’re working on now.

Jerri: Actually, I’m working on three. Two, I’m revising. The third story I’m about half done with. The one’s I’m working on revision for are action-adventure romance, the heroes are jungle guides, the heroine’s, botanists. The book I’m writing is a romantic suspense called “Going Once, Going Twice, Dead” It’s about a sculptress, who is the only suspect in a homicide case my hero is investigating.

Debra: I don't believe I've ever read a story about jungle guides and botanists. That one greatly intrigues me.

Ray Bradbury said, “We are cups, constantly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.” How do you keep your creative cup filled?

Jerri: Lately, it has been by reading. It inspires me to write, especially when the book I’d just finished has that special magic about it.

Debra: There's nothing like that special magic sweeping you away into another world.

Is there a point when your characters begin to come alive and you can see and hear them?

Jerri: Yes, it’s before I even start the book—before I write one word. I get a visual image of both characters, the hero is usually clearer to me.

Debra: Some very famous authors have played with language, creating words for people or places that no one has ever heard of. Have you ever played with words in that way and if so how?

Jerri: I haven’t tried my hands at this yet, but never say never.

Debra: For some writers, dreams play a role in creating fiction. Has this been true for you? Have you ever dreamed a scene or an image that later wound up in one of your books?

Jerri: I’ve dreamed three story ideas that are now books. “Going Once, Going Twice, Dead” came from a dream I’d had.

Debra: As a child did any particular book or author pull you into their imaginary world?

Jerri: So many, it’s hard to name just a few. The first books that really transported me were the Nancy Drew Mysteries. They began my love of suspense. In the fifth grade, my tastes matured. I fell in love with “The Great Gatsby” (It might have had something to do with Robert Redford playing him in the movie.) I went on to read all of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s books. What an amazing writer he was.

Debra: I still have a dog eared copy of The Great Gatsby and re-read it last summer. He was an amazing writer.

If there were no categories for books, no reader expectations to meet, and you could create the wildest work of imagination that you could think of what kind of story would that be?

Jerri: I’m not sure. But it’d be filled with action and adventure. I love writing heart-pounding, suspenseful scenes.

Debra: Is there anything else you would like to add about the role of imagination, and dreams in creating fiction? Any other message for our readers?

Jerri: I’ve had a vivid imagination since I was a young child growing up on a farm in Minnesota. You had to, to stay sane through those long, cold Winter’s. But it took me years to realize those voices in my head were characters trying to get me to write their stories.

Debra: I think for many of us, the imaginings were stories that we just hadn't learned to write down yet.

Jerri, thank you for joining us here on this Make-believe Monday to share a little bit of the magic of writing with our readers.


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Also getting ready for my book launch party Thursday April 2nd at Burkes Bookstore in Memphis, TN.

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