Meet Tricia Mills, the author of HEARTBREAK RIVER, releasing this month from Razorbill. You can find her on a number of social networking sites, including MySpace. She also writes for Harlequin in addition to her work as a freelance journalist. She believes Buffy and Angel will one day find their happy ending, which I can totally get behind.
Fortunately, the people at Razorbill didn't change this awesome cover, unlike HOTTIE.
TV and Movies: How They Inspire My Writing
By Tricia Mills
By Tricia Mills
I’ve been cracking up at the new Hulu commercials that make fun of TV rotting our brains. While I know that sitting in front of the tube for hours on end and channel surfing isn’t the way to enrich my brain, I don’t subscribe to the belief that TV is inherently a bad thing. In fact, I get a lot of inspiration from TV programs. Plots or characters will trigger something in my mind, and off my imagination goes.
For instance, in the summer of 2006, I went on a DVD binge on programs I’d not seen when they originally aired. I watched all seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, all five of Angel and the first of Supernatural. The novel I wrote that fall isn’t a copy of any of those programs, but it was definitely inspired by all that viewing of paranormal programming.
Characters on shows can be the models for characters I create – physically, that is. I rip their photos out of magazines and put them up on a corkboard above my computer for inspiration as I’m writing their descriptions.
Sometimes it’s just a spark that comes from watching a certain show, and my own story goes off in a totally different direction. From watching Legend of the Seeker, I have an idea for a magical story percolating in my brain. And I have to admit that Craig Horner, who plays Richard Cypher (the Seeker), may appear as the inspiration for a hero at some point.
It’s not only TV characters and plots that inspire me, but also those of movies. For my second young adult novel, Ice and Desire (set to release in the summer of 2010), the two main guys in the book are modeled physically after Ben Barnes and William Moseley, who played Prince Caspian and Peter Pevensie in The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian.
Sometimes inspiration can even come from a sub-par show or movie and the thought that “I so would have written that differently.” That’s the cool thing – I can. :)
When you’re a writer, you don’t have to feel guilty about those hours you spend in front of the TV. After all, it’s research!
Yes, that's what I'm doing when I watch Chuck, Heroes, and Dollhouse. Research.
I need to watch Supernatural, don't I?