An author’s inspiration

Published 10:00 pm Tuesday, March 15, 2016

For the last three years and two months, I have been hard at work on a novel, Illegitimate Advantage. I was completely inspired to write this story, mainly because the story line came to me so clearly. It was a story that spoke to me from the vantage point of ethnic twin sisters who fall victim to selfish evil.

While I was completely motivated to write the book, it was never easy to compose. I story-boarded the novel on the walls of my condo while living on Folly Beach and channeled almost all of my waking hours towards it.

Since the story was told from the vantage point of twin sisters, for the entire time (while I was writing, of course), I’m quite sure I became a woman. Not only did I feel the dialogue of these lovely characters pass through me, I also reached out to some of my own life challenges and applied them to the project.

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I spent countless hours sketching out the contents of each chapter while sitting on a tractor cutting the grassy pastures in the heat of the summer. Never in my life had I ever been so completely involved in a creative process. I was literally living a dream while at the same time trying to put it on paper for others read.

Every single word was chosen with a sense of purpose, and every chapter had a mission to accomplish. Each had to capture the attention of the reader and provide a major point to the story line.

Interestingly, I learned something about my writing process. I realized that I did my best writing in distracting environments. Coffee houses served as my favorite venues where I could center myself and fight for every word. It seemed the louder the conversations were around me or the more diverting a person’s perfume was, the more I was able to reach deeper into my imagination.

Many of my friends and acquaintances saw me during this insane time of my life, sitting amongst the fray typing. On one occasion I was so inspired to complete a chapter, after Openroad Coffee closed for the day, I completed a chapter with my laptop perched on the passenger seat of my truck while the rain soaked my back.  Now that was an inspirational moment!

As each chapter came and went, I never became overconfident that I would successfully finish it.   I always feared the time when would come when I hit a brick wall.

A writer’s mind might be compared to a baseball player, standing in a batting cage warming up, when suddenly his swing goes bad.  As soon as a slugger takes his stance, he knows when he’s either got it or lost it.

I’ve imagined inspiration as being described as a writer’s best friend whom he plays Hide-and-Seek with. When he searches for his friend and finds him, it’s a wonderful thing. But, when he can’t find him, it’s horrible.

Luckily my inspirational friend never abandoned me but stayed with me until the very end, at which point I wept. I was finally done with the story and was confident that nothing more was needed to be said.

I recently had my book launch at La Bouteile in Tryon. The event was both electrifying and amazing. To my delight I sold every book I had on hand. My parents came to the event which made the experience so much more special.

I want to thank everyone for coming out to my book launch and I hope that you enjoy Illegitimate Advantage just as much as I enjoyed writing it. For those interested, my next book signing will be at Stone Soup Market & Cafe, Landrum on Saturday, April 9 from 5 to 7 p.m.  Hope to see you there!

– Submitted by Kirk Gollwitzer