Monday, June 21, 2010

Make-Believe Monday with Christine Price

Today on Make-Believe Mondays my guest is Christine Price.  Christine, first, tell us a little bit about the manuscript  you’re working on now.

Christine: Well, my new work (due out in September from Carina Press) is a horror-romance hybrid, which focuses on a young man with psychic powers who falls into the clutches of a mad scientist, only to find love in the most unexpected place.

Debra:  How exciting to be one of the first authors at Carina Press!  Congrats!  It sounds like an exciting story.

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?

Christine:  I draw inspiration from a LOT of different places. Whether it’s a particularly memorable episode of The Tudors or a good book, I seem to be unable to stop myself from suddenly getting a trillion ideas racing through my head all at once. The only problem with that is that it conflicts with my attention span, which is roughly that of a goldfish. I always have a half-dozen serious projects going on at once, and another dozen waiting for my attention on the backburner.

Debra:  The Tudors, hmm I need to check that one out.  Thank you.  It's nice to have more than one project going.  I'm a firm believer in that and suspect it prevents writers block.  Because if one story frustrates on any given day there's the option to jump over to the other one!

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

Christine:  Characters for me are interesting. I tend to come up with small snippets of dialogue first. From there, I start wondering what sort of person would actually SAY the stuff that’s suddenly appeared on my screen. From there, it just tends to escalate. When they really start showing up for me, though, is when I find a song that reminds me of them. Take one of my newest characters, Matt. I love him to death, and a large part of his character was developed while I was listening to “Falling For the First Time” by the Barenaked Ladies.

Debra:   Fascinating.  I've been doing these interviews for four years now and you're the first author to say this about songs.

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?

Christine:  Absolutely! One of my first passions was high fantasy, and I spent a whole year working on a project that needed about three different unique languages (all of them to come up with a way to say ‘zombie’ strangely enough). I’ve never gone so far as to actually create an entire language (the prospect terrifies me), but I think that every good fantasy writer has the ability to develop something unique to their world, and often that defies the languages that already exist.

Debra:  Yes, so true.  Hmm you have me wondering how many different ways there are to say zombie now.  :-)

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?

Christine:  I’ll be honest: the entire premise for Soul Bond was based on a dream. As I recall, the dream actually started out on a pirate ship, but Julian and Ellis were very definitely there. When I saw the open call Samhain had going on for space opera, I knew that it would work. I think I remembered three things from the dream besides the characters. Something about a ring, a sacrifice for love, and a long-awaited reunion. It was probably the most vivid dream I’ve ever had.

Debra:  Wonderful!  Some very good books have come from the author having a vivid dream.

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

Christine:  For me, it was more like which mundane task could pull me OUT. If I had to pick one particularly influential author, however, I would have to say that Patricia C. Wrede’s Enchanted Forest chronicles were the whole reason I got turned onto fantasy in the first place. Her character Cimorene was the first strong female character in a fantasy series that I’d ever read about, and I felt like I could relate more to her than any of the male heroes that had come before her.

Debra:  Another to add to the to be read list then.  :-)  Thank you. 

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?

Christine:  What a fantastic question! I don’t know what the book would look like, but it would definitely have hot men kissing. All kidding aside, I think it’s important for any writer to just write what they love. Reader expectations and categories are absolutely important, but passion is what ultimately breaks through.

Debra:  Thank you!  This is so very true.

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?

Christine:  A long time ago, I heard that the most effective brainstorming sessions cannot have anyone say ‘no’ or claim that something is silly. I apply the same thing to my writing. My imagination gets triggered by the weirdest things, and as long as I sit back and enjoy the ride, instead of resisting it, it never lets me down.

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

Christine can be found haunting her blog at and on Twitter at Her first work, Soul Bond, was released last month

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The weather here in the Memphis area has been getting up to 100 and this sort of weather always has me slowing down to that southern summer pace.  Sitting and sipping a glass of something cold while observing people is one thing that feeds this writers creative cup.  Like Christine, I have multiple projects started, though I tend to only mention the one I'm working full steam ahead on.  This week I'll be pulling them out, looking them over and deciding which one calls to me the loudest.  I'm still researching for the Scotland set medieval and continuing the agent search with the most recently completed manuscript, so in the meantime I need to use the writing muscles again until I'm ready to jump start the medieval story.  This is the beauty of having more than one project waiting in the wings.

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Till next time, stay cool and remember to drink plenty of cold liquids.

Love and light,