I haven't dug this deep into fiction since I was 14-16 years old, and wrote my first 100 page "book." I'd lock myself into the office with the doors closed and the lights down, sometimes listening to quiet music. I'd emerge myself in the story and become the main character, a young Native American girl living in the Great Plains as the white people encroached.
Now, I'm falling into my love story that takes place in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. I talk about my characters, Isabelle and Arturo, like they are real people. I live their conversations and their experiences. I find myself thinking about them all day long, and while I fall asleep. What adventuree, what misfortune will I put them through next time? How will they fall in love? What will they say to each other next? I'm having a hard time focusing on anything else.
Since the writer's conference I have written about 8,000 words, and am now close to 20,000. When a passage or scene works, I feel high. I emerge from the dark bedroom where I've locked myself, positively glowing. I feel like I've just been in San Miguel, on horseback, interacting with Arturo. On Sunday, I came out onto the deck to join David, where he was BBQ-ing dinner so I could write.
"So, if I have a crush on the man I am creating, does that mean I have a crush on myself?" I asked him, laughing.
"No, because he's probably your ideal man."
Interesting. The more I think about Arturo and traits I've given him, the more he reminds me of David. He is different though, with a different past, and passions. Different enough to be fiction.
I'm having the time of my life right now writing this book. I don't care if its published, I'm just enjoying the journey. When my 30-40 minutes of writing time runs out in the morning, I feel like I've just lost a piece of myself. I hope someday in my life I am fortunate enough to do this full time. Until then, many early mornings await.