Watching movies inspires the muse

While writing The Outer Banks House, I watched the movie Pride and Prejudice to fire up my writing muse. I had read the book by Jane Austen as well. But outside of Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings, every time I watch a movie based on a book, I walk away disappointed. But Pride and Prejudice was very well done, and I thought Kiera Knightly protrayed Elizabeth Bennett perfectly. The era of the book wasn’t the same as the era of which I was writing (1868) but the love story (of a mismatched couple–one extremely wealthy and one from a much more modest background) put me mind of my own love story (between a rich planter’s daughter and a penniless fisherman). I even listened to the soundtrack while I wrote sometimes. God, the sound of that soaring piano music still makes me want to cry. And write.

Now that I’m writing the sequel, I found that I needed a new movie to fire up the muse. I watched my copy of Pride and Prejudice again, and loved every minute of it. But I’d been there, done that. I’d just finished reading Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier for the second time, so I decided to purchase the movie Cold Mountain, which I’d seen in the theaters when it first came out in 2003, and starred Nicole Kidman, Jude Law, and Renee Zellweger. In addition to the similar period details as my book, I like this particular book/movie because of the love story. The two tentative lovebirds, Inman and Ada (and another odd socioeconomic couple), are forced apart by the Civil War, and their lives change dramatically while Inman is off fighting and then walking all the back to Cold Mountain to a woman who he doesn’t even think will want him anymore. They are hardly together for the entire book except through flashbacks, and this style of narration is very similar to my sequel. I find separation of true love very inspiring! The reader can’t wait for the two lovers to get back together, and this excitement keeps the reader reading. At least, it works for me, and I’m hoping it will work for my lovely readers as well!

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