Monday, February 13, 2012


A few weeks ago, I mentioned that I would love to hear what inspires you. I've got several interesting replies to this and I would like to take a moment to share some with you. Enjoy. :)

Neil Low:
What inspires my writing most is reading about historical crimes that have either had a strong local or national appeal, like the Lindbergh Kidnapping, which touched the hearts of people around the world. Reading about the case, using my veteran cop experience, I was convinced that more people were involved in the kidnapping, the investigation was shoddy, and many of the trial witnesses were hungry for headlines. So of course I wrote about the case and expanded what might have happened. I've also been drawn to Seattle stories that gathered national headlines during their era, like the disappearance of an aging heiress, shortly after her marriage to a much younger man. The local police did a fantastic job solving that murder, but no one remembers the case today. Then there was the murder of a police officer during Prohibition, his body found inside a locked garage with two bullet holes to his face and another wound on top of his head. Despite the suspicious circumstances and other defensive wounds, the death was ruled a suicide by the Homicide Commander. As a modern day Homicide Commander of the same department, I had access to what was left of the original case file, and I didn't like what I read. This dubious finding makes for great material for me to write about and explore with my own theories. My current story involves the death of a young woman near a north end lake in Seattle. Evidence suggest sexual assault and points towards her father, a disabled war veteran, but is this an unfair character assassination by sensation seeking reporters? Again, there is more to this story that begs to be told. I love writing about cases like these where you know there is more to the story than we were told. I particularly like fictionalizing sketchy historical accounts, because I feel this is the best way to get at the deeper truths in life and explore the motives that drive people to do what they do. That's what makes a great story.

Nature inspires me a lot. I love being a passenger during car rides because I get to stare out the window at the scenery. I'll take my camera out with me and just take pictures of trees I find interesting, or one time, a Cadillac graveyard I stumbled on while hiking. All of it stores itself in my brain and eventually inspires, or just finds itself, in a story. 

Camille Griffiths:

 When I started writing, I got all my inspiration from the way I wished movies or books would have turned out. Now, I get a lot of it from life experiences, dreams, daydreams, and my daughter. =)

1 comment:

Heidi Leanne said...

Oh, Neil Low's books sound fascinating! Now, I'll have to look up those books. I love mystery and history - I can't write mystery, but its sure fun to read.

Like, Neil, I find inspiration reading old newspapers, letters, or other primary sources from history. I love discovering stories from the past that have been untold, or forgotten. However, I like to focus on the romance and encouragement that we can get out of these stories, and dive into the reasons behind the brief snippets of the actions that were recorded.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...