Saturday, May 19, 2012

Evolution of a story by Michael W. Davis

I’m often asked, “Where in the world do your stories come from?” Here’s a snapshot of how my first novel TAINTED HERO (which received six 5 start reviews) came to life.

Where did the idea for TH come from
I was driving home from taking my sweetie to breakfast, and I heard a news report on the radio. It dealt with a topic I had worried about for many years. When I heard it, my immediate thought was, “Wow, its closer then I thought.” Then, “Hey, that would make a good storyline. Its got intrigue, personalized conflict, just needs some sweet loven, Hell, I can do that.” And the seed began. The final draft morphed significantly from the original idea. It developed a life of its own. By that I mean the story took twists and turns I never envisioned at the start.

Where did the characters come from
The hero was based 50% on the physical and emotional attributes of a friend that was a Specops officer in Desert storm, and 50% on myself in my younger days. The heroine was derived from a female I worked with in the Pentagon many years ago. I always found her extremely feminine (please don’t tell my wife). The villain was derived from a self-serving jerk I encounter on several projects I worked on for the Army. I only changed his hair color and age. The son of the heroine was based on images and memories of my son when he was a boy.

Where did the title come from?
The story was renamed three times.  At its conception, I used the name Medium Contingency. As the story came to life, I changed it to Moral Paradox. When I sent it out to my hit squad (friends/family that are brutally honest and critical), my son came up with the final title. When I heard it, I knew I liked it. But just to be safe, I surveyed about two dozen friends/family and of the four titles I offered, Tainted Hero won hands down.

How long did it take to write?
The actual creation of the first draft only took about eight weeks. My mode of writing is to lock myself in a back room and leave this world until I get the story out. As corny as it sounds, I actually live the story as it evolves. That’s the neat/fun part of it. The part I hate is the editing. I revised this particular manuscript over thirty times. The entire process, from birth to “I’m ready to submit,” took about five months.

Any other titles we should look for?
Since that first call by a publisher I have 14 stories released/contracted in the genres of romance, suspense, political thrillers and Sci Fi. You can read reviews, excerpts and watch videos at Yes, I’ve been a busy boy. Gives us old guys something to do to keep us out of trouble.

Big Mike
Big Mike

1 comment:

  1. Keep on keeping on. There was an interesting article about the need for positive sci-fi stories in The Smithsonian. I sent a copy to January Bain. If you didn't see it, I could send it to you privately. It's copyrighted, of course.