Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Katie Allen-Day One

Hey all! Bridget here. I am so excited to have Katie Allen on our blog. She wrote one of my favorite books, Breaking The Silence, and has written some wonderful love stories. Without further ado, Katie Allen...

Inspiration. It sounds so lofty, as if choirs of muses descend upon the ethereal, high-brow writer to gift her with their…I don't know--muse-iness? For me, inspiration is pretty pedestrian. It could even be described as down and dirty. This is fitting, as I do write down and dirty books (emphasis on the dirty). If the muses were to descend upon me, they would find me cranky and mussed, sitting sideways on the couch with a snoring dog sprawled across my feet. In an attempt at full disclosure, I have to add that I would probably have a smear of chocolate across my cheek and the dog would be snoring and farting.

Do you now wish I'd never drawn this mental picture? Yeah, well, just stick with me for a moment before you run to scrub down your brain. I've painted a pretty unromantic portrait, right? Wrong. And don't give me that “the reader is always right” line, either--I've hijacked this blog and I'm running with it. So anyway (you will soon learn, dear readers, that I'm the Queen of Distraction, the Empress of Random Segues and the High Priestess of Rambling Sub-Plots (probably the reason I couldn't write a short to save my life)), I think that starting with the most ordinary characters, on the most ho-hum day, in the most average place, creates the backdrop for some of the most heart-wrenching, deeply felt romance stories.

Here's where I give your reading muscles a break and hand you some eye candy, in the form of one of my book covers. What? Shameless self-promotion, you say? Never. Oh, by the way, Seeing Blind is out in both e-book (http://www.ellorascave.com/) and print (EC or Amazon).

Okay--back with me? Good. We were talking about boringness. The thing is, when my characters start out with their pencil-pushing jobs and stagnant sex lives and their Friday nights alone with Ben and Jerry, what happens next--a mystery or a hunky sex god or (usually) both--is so much more life-changing and dramatic.

To use a metaphor (I looove metaphors), I grew up with a black and white television. A small black and white television. All my friends had the big color TV sets, and my many siblings and I had to fight over which of the five and a half channels we would watch on our tiny, antenna-topped, black and white dinosaur.

We whined about it, of course, but what watching Scooby Doo and Magnum, P.I. in shades of gray did (besides encouraging me to be a reader) was to make the occasional time we went to the movie theater an amazing, exhilarating experience. Everything on that movie screen was huge and vivid and breathtaking, and I don't know if I would have appreciated it quite so much if the TV at home hadn't been so small and grey.

What makes romance so very wonderful is that it takes the dull, everyday grind of life and lights it up. It colors it with excitement and passion and love, with the stomach-fizzing knowledge that there is someone who wants you as desperately as you want him (or her or them). These books make it seem possible that, in the middle of paying bills or vacuuming dirt from the plant the cat just knocked over or having a root canal, you really could be swept away, that the hottie of your dreams could drop in your lap at any moment and break the monotony of the boring, unavoidable life-stuff with spine-melting passion.

Break time! Since you sat through one of my metaphors, here are two pretty, pretty men for your reward.

Good? Okay. I'm back tomorrow to talk about what this long-ass post I wrote today really does have to do with inspiration.


Chris said...

*drools helplessly over covers*

Wait, were you saying something? ;)

Carolyn Crane said...

Katie, what a fabulous post! I love your metaphors, esp the one about the black and white TV. And the way romance adds a little something to life. Very cool!

Bridget Locke said...

I feel like such an idiot. I had this all marked on my calendar as today-Friday. Bad Bridget. *sniffle*

Anyhoodles, Katie, thank you so much for coming on our blog. We really appreciate it. :D

Lea said...

Drooling shamelessly right along with Chris, yikes - I need a bib.

Wonderful fun post Katie. I've heard great things about your stories from Bridget.

Heading over to Ellora's Cave.. :)

Katie Ruggle said...

Hi Everyone! Thanks for all of your kind comments--it was fun to do (I jump at any chance to babble about books).

I know (re: covers)--aren't they just too, too pretty? The one thing that cracks me up is that the guy in the boxing ring on the One-Two Punch cover still has his shoes on. I always want to sing,"You can leave your shoes on..." Hee.

Don't worry, Bridget--I'm impatient anyway and wouldn't have wanted to wait an extra day to see my posts! :-) Thanks so much for inviting me--DIK is a great place to be!

Tracy said...

ok the metaphor about the black and white tv was fab. Loved it. And it's just so true. I love reading about the average person having that 1 wonderful person drop into their lives and light it up. That's good stuff right there.

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