I've probably been to every good Mexican restaurant in our side of town but name a steakhouse and I'm clueless. Now my boyfriend is a country guy living in the city. He knew right where to go. We got out of the truck and was immediately greeted with the aroma of steak. Dan was in heaven. Anyway, we went inside and a barrel full of peanuts sat right inside of the door. "Have you ever been to a place where you just throw the peanut shells on the floor?" he asked over the blaring country music. I'm pretty sure my eyes were as big as saucers. It just didn't feel right to throw shells on the floor of a restaurant. Sure enough though, peanut shells littered the place.
We were shown to a table, ordered our food, and had some great conversation which was interrupted occasionally by a random "Yeehaw!" by the waitstaff. Every few minutes the music increased in volume and the cute, bubbly waitresses went in the center of the restaurant to line dance.
I'm a city girl as much as he is a country guy. I don't like country music, don't eat steak, would rather not line dance (okay, I don't even know how!), and cowboy boots would be at the top of the list of things I'd never wear, but I had a fabulous time. Besides being with my boyfriend which always is awesome, the atmosphere was so new and exciting. And it inspired me. In some book in the future (I don't know which one!) a character will be visiting a restaurant where they throw peanut shells on the floor and the Wrangler-wearing waitresses yell "Yeehaw!" as loud as they can.
As a writer I need to continuously make up new things for my books. Just like real life, if the characters go to the same places all of the time, doing the same things, they'll never grow and expand their personalities. And the book will be a big old snore-fest for the reader. Not good. To avoid this happening, I let real life inspire my writing. I take the real world and mesh it with my imagination to form the stories for my readers. If I notice a unique person, they'll probably appear somewhere in my book. I went to Florence, Az for the first time and realized the town would be the perfect setting for my Desert Secret Series. The first two books are already published and I only had planned on four, but the town itself inspires me to write more!
Well, readers, I need to go for now. There is a big world out there and I need to let life inspire me, so I can bring you wonderful new stories!