Welcome to the first day of The Belgrave Legacy Blog Series. The series will be going from today (September 20, 2016) until November 1, 2016. Each week, there will be a theme with 2 blog posts (Tuesday and Thursday).
This week’s theme is Beginnings.
Getting book ideas has always been pretty random for me. The Belgrave Daughter (now The Belgrave Legacy) came to me in a dream after my grandma died. Some of the story had been thought of 3 years earlier, as a contemporary romance (Cracked: A Life in Pieces) that had been shelved, but most of it came from that one night and I knew that I just had to write it.
But let me backtrack a bit and go into more detail about The Belgrave Legacy‘s beginnings.
In middle school, I started writing a contemporary romance about a girl who is responsible for guiding a new, surly and Mr. Darcy-ish student through their high school. The girl was named Alex, the boy Bryan, and there was a love triangle with someone named Caleb. But besides that character name (and the verbal sparring between the two main characters), there was nothing else similar to The Belgrave Legacy.After 3 years of struggling to finish Cracked, I abandoned it. In that time, I had graduated middle school, moved past a lot of friend drama—and most importantly—my grandma had died, devastating me. I had a lot of dreams about her, but two in particular stood out to me:
- The night before she died, I had a dream that it was Thanksgiving dinner and I was in her empty house. I woke up with a soaked pillow and began crying loudly enough that my mom came into my room and turned on the light. I spent the next hour crying until I couldn’t produce any more tears. And I demanded I miss school so I could see my grandma one more time. It turned out that I was correct, and she died minutes after my mom and I arrived at the nursing home. We went home, I sat down at my laptop, and wrote the Thanksgiving scene dream from Chapter 1 as condolences poured in through Facebook.
- The second event was about a year later when I had another dream about my grandmother. This one took place in a city townhouse where my birthday party was happening (a completely fabricated event given I had never had a birthday at such a location in real life). She led me through the building, allowing me to see that each floor was a different scene, representing my different hobbies as if I had chosen each for my career path. I asked what it all meant, but woke up without an answer.
Now, as someone who is very rational, and knows about wish fulfillment and psychology (thanks to having a psychologist for a mother), I know that these dreams probably aren’t supernatural conversations with my deceased grandmother. But given my grandmother had dreams predicting other’s death while she was alive, my mother sometimes has other precognitive dreams, and I’ve had clairaudience as well as clairvoyance (the latter almost exclusively with people breaking up), the idea of magic and ancestors leading the way was a no-brainer for me to include in The Belgrave Daughter (part 1/first 11 chapters of The Belgrave Legacy).
Next: see a snapshot of the first draft of The Belgrave Legacy.