A story comes from the soul. And when it comes to research, gathering the bits of soul can be immense fun. Take for instance, my recent trip to Las Vegas. I had a planned vow renewal to be resided over by Elvis. For some reason, I’ve dreamed of this since I was a tweenager. I was torn between the big, white wedding, and flying to Vegas to take vows with Elvis. These things sometimes can be chosen for the best. Since my family was big on the white wedding, I went that route. No regrets. But standing in front of Elvis was always in the back of my mind. So, comes the theme of my 10th wedding anniversary. Elvis, my friends, husband, and I, all in a little chapel laughing and crying. It is what Vegas is about. Making dreams come true.
So, what could I possibly do next? Shopping for bling of course, and keeping that ever present eye of a writer absorbing all details and nuisances of the Strip. Vegas is not like any other city I’ve been in. There is no where like it. With no limits, all you need is a dream and the money to back it up.
Plus, there are sites to see that are unlike anywhere else. I’ve been to Venice, Paris, New York, Sydney and London. But where is the best beer and cider collection that I’ve found? The Public House in the Venetian. Where can you get something the way you like it without trouble? Just ask. At the Stratosphere, I wanted a plate of scallops without any other seafood such as lobster or pawns. Unfortunately, I acquired an allergy since I was 26. The chef was happy to make a scallops dish for me.
The shopping is very expensive on the Strip. But I wanted some bling to remember my trip, and of course, I have a birthday coming up. I figured the pawn shop from the show “Pawn Stars” might have something, and if anything, I would get to see it. I have to admit, I was impressed with the selection. I love to buy rings, from antiques to modern. They had a great selection of rings, and I managed to find a sweet garnet, with 20 small diamonds and 10K gold. It was stamped EMA on the inside, which I’ve researched later to be a New York jeweler for the last 30 years. The stories this ring must tell. It is bling that sings. I might have to have one of my characters buy and wear it.
I am starting a book 2 in my novelette series, with the characters in Vegas. Wink, wink. But of all the things I love about writing, it’s including the details I find while traveling. I’ve just written a scene in which my characters notice a drunk couple can’t find their room. In fact, they are in the wrong hotel. Little details like this can bring a book alive. It only takes that observant sense wherever you go. “Be careful, or you’ll end up in my novel” could never be more true. But it is the fact of being a writer, you can use anything from shopping, to bling, to standing waiting for an elevator. Writing happens everywhere.
Update 7/18/18: It’s so cool to look back at these older posts, when I was starting out writing romance. I wrote some of these early blog posts to motivate me and inspire me to keep going. I still have this ring, and it became more a ring I wore to be “Marilyn Vix”. Put me in the author mood, and would help me get through those difficult days at the day job. Of course, I had to do a semi-retire move after having a heart attack and heart issues back at the end of 2014. And the writing was there for me to keep going. It saved me. I had my children’s writing and my romance stories to keep me going when I was so sick. And it still keeps me going, four years later.
Just keep swimming. Just keep writing, no matter what happens. 😉