Where do ideas come from? Ask Karen Duvall

Karen Duvall-2 Please help me give a warm welcome to my special guest today, Karen Duvall, author of Desert Guardian. She’s going to talk to us about ideas and where they come from.

First, here’s a little about Karen.

Karen Duvall lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and four incredibly spoiled pets. She’s an award winning author published with Harlequin Luna and is currently working on a new contemporary fantasy romance series.

Where do ideas come from?
I’m often asked where I get my ideas for the stories I write. They come from a variety of places, even from my dreams. An idea for a romantic suspense novel can pop out of the most unlikely sources.

For example, the other day I was watching a comedy bit on TV about a group therapy session. The therapist was a woman and her patients were three men sharing some very private secrets. It was meant to be funny, but with a twist I figured out a way I could spin it into a dark and creepy storyline. I’d tell you what I came up with, but then I’d have to kill you. *grin*

Another unlikely place for inspiration is the DMV. I had to get my driver’s license renewed last week, so I spent an hour and half waiting for my number to come up. Idle minds are capable of spinning all kinds of scenarios when inspiration strikes. There were so many people at the DMV from all walks of life, old and young, some taking tests, some there for the same reason I was. My head overflowed with ideas by the time I walked out of there. My husband was with me and he contributed his own thoughts to my story stew, which included a swarmy guy and two hookers of the cougar persuasion. I swear I have enough for a whole novel. I think one of the key characters will be the elderly hunched back lady with the walker. Imagine pulling your car up next to hers at an intersection.

Ripping ideas from newspaper headlines is a tried and true method for new plots. You can find anything from local community news to national hot beds of scandal to political intrigue. I tend to gravitate toward darker themes, like human trafficking and sex tourism. These are concepts of denigration that scream high drama, and writing stories about them is my way of solving horrific crimes with my weapon of choice: a happy ending. Combine this type of story with romance and I can save the world one love story at a time.

Desert Guardian Karen Duvall MedMy romantic suspense novel DESERT GUARDIAN takes the real issue of lethal cult behavior that uses slavery and mind control, and turns it into a story about trust and healing. A lot of truth is uncovered in this tale about family tragedy and the discovery of love in an unlikely situation.

What types of suspense stories do you enjoy reading?

I love any kind of suspense as long as I’m only reading it from the comfort of my own chair. Care to tell us a little more about Desert Guardian?

Book Description:

When Kelly Bancroft receives a suicide letter from her brother, she knows the star-worshipping cult he belongs to is to blame. Cult intervention specialist—and ex-cultist—Sam Reed, aka The Arrow, has his work cut out for him when he teams up with Kelly to rescue her brother. Sam has good reason to avoid the cult that killed his mother, but he’s made it his mission to save those who have fallen under Star Mother’s spell.

Will Sam’s and Kelly’s romantic relationship help or hinder them in their struggle to stop a mass suicide? Or will they themselves fall victim to the cult’s fatal madness?


Sam pulled into the dirt driveway and parked the Jeep in front of the cabin. He checked on Kelly one more time. She hadn’t moved. Her honey-colored skin seemed to glow in the soft light that shone from the deck’s pole lamp. If he leaned down and brushed his lips across her cheek, would she taste as sweet as the honey color that coated her skin? He sensed something special about this woman with a fiery spirit that rivaled his own. Right now he felt content just to look at her, relieved that she was here with him and no longer a hostage of the cult. Aching to get closer, he ran the backs of his fingers lightly over her gleaming mane of chestnut hair.

Her eyes popped open, and he yanked his hand back. She shot him a startled look before sitting up.

“We’re home,” he said, nodding at the small cabin that appeared slightly sinister in the dim light from the lamp. “My home, anyway. Are you awake enough to stand?”

She craned her neck from side to side, as if working out the kinks. Eyes narrowed, she gave him a quick once-over. “I’m fine. I thought you were dropping me off at my father’s hotel.”

“Tomorrow. Consider tonight a free stay at a cozy cabin in the woods on behalf of your new bodyguard.”

“Bodyguard? And who are you guarding me from?”

“Star Mother cult assassins, just in case they come looking for you.”

She seemed to think this over before nodding. “Fine. I’m too tired to argue with you. Did I snore?”

“Like a drunken lumberjack.”

She curled her lip at him and climbed from the Jeep. Placing both hands on her hips, she arched her back and stretched from side to side. Raising her arms as she stood on her toes, her shorts hiked up to reveal shapely thighs and a hint of booty that peeked a half-inch below the hem. He enjoyed the view.

Desert Guardian is available now from http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DG8KCKG“>Amazonhttp://www.karenduvallauthor.com/

Thanks so much for visiting with me today.

Learn more about Karen and her books:

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