Michael W. Davis - That Faint Line
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That Faint Line
by Michael W. Davis
Many writers use their personal lives as the source for scenes and vignettes within their novels. Such a practice can add detail and a blending between reality and fiction. The trick is to select experiences that fit within the context of the theme and advance the story line. For example, in my novel, TAINTED HERO, the hero is an Army officer decorated for his bravery and patriotism. At a party, he encounters a circle of snubs pontificating about the woes of our armed forces and spewing forth a tongue leashing of the men and women that risk their lives for all of us. The hero elegantly exposes the flaws in their argument and reveals their ignorance of history and the core intend of our warriors. Hard to believe that anyone would actually demean the men and women that give so much to all of us, but it actually happened at a party I had been invited to attend (for the last time, for obvious reasons).
Another scene from my novel FORGOTTEN CHILDREN was based on an event that occurred when I was eleven and I witnessed the magnanimous nature of my father and his compassion for a single mother cast aside by society. In my novel BLIND CONSENT, which won the rose award, two of the female characters were based on childhood friends, one of which represented my first experience with losing someone I knew to the angel of death. This third story is a reflection of my memories of the wonderful people of the south struggling through an impoverished existence, yet maintaining their pride and humor.
I would estimate that 30% to 40% of the scenes in my stories are based on experiences from personal life, members of my family, or events that happened to friends. The key is walk that faint line and not divulge the source of all your inspirations. Some must remain secrets, for to confide their reality could result in chaos and bodily or emotional torment. For example, it would be natural for some romantic scenes to be drawn from real life experiences, yet the truth about which are realities and which are fantasies must remain a mystery for the safety of an author’s marriage.
Michael Davis (Davisstories.com)
Author of the Year, (2008 and 2009)
Blind Consent, “The answers are buried in the secrets of the past.”
Forgotten Children, “Only Sara knows the truth.”
Tainted Hero, “Sometimes good people do bad things.”
Veil of Deception, “Sometimes truth cuts deeper than a lie.”
Shadow of Guilt, “To each crossing of paths, there is a purpose.”
Touch of Blue, “What is our destiny?”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
After reading a draft of one my first novels, a friend asked, “Where do you get the ideas for what you write?” The best answer I could come up with was, “Life.” The same is probably true for many that try to create stories, they draw from what they know, what they remember from the highs and lows of life. In my case, so many memories began with the care and mentoring of the southern women in my youth. The courage and compassion of aunts and cousins that raised me formed my take on the world, and my view of the role relationships play to our very existence. Even with the demeaning image of romance in the media, the unique bond between a man and woman is what saves us from the loneliness, and gives us the energy to endure the sad times. Sounds hokey for a big guy to be a romantic doesn’t it, but its what I believe, and that philosophy flows into every thing I write.
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