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August 24, 2014
Posted at 9:51 am

Hearing Voices in my Head

Somebody once posted a note on my timeline that said that if you hear voices in your head and they pretty much ignore you and carry on a conversation among themselves, then you are probably a writer. Grrr.

I came out of Laramie WYO last Monday and have been camped in National Forests on my way into and out of Yellowstone National Park. As a result, I've been able to write a lot when I wasn't exploring Old Faithful but I've had little or no internet connection. What? No email? No Facebook? What will I do?

Into the silence come the voices.

It's not unusual for Brian and crew to be talking in my head. The chatter is so constant that I just file it away and then write it down at the next opportunity. What has been unusual has been having Laramie Wyoming Bell chatting away with an as-yet-unnamed (AYU) young woman of the 1860s. That's Laramie Wyoming Bell the younger, daughter of Cole and Mary Beth Alexander Bell. (End of Redtail) And yes, every once in a while, Kyle Redtail Bell, son of Cole and Ashley Bell, jump into the conversation with his sister and with an AYU young man of the 1860s. There just isn't anything crazy enough to describe the latest erotic paranormal romance western mystery that is taking shape in my brain.

In order to focus on the coming attraction, I'm busily getting LNDtH moved ahead. I'm nine chapters into the twenty or so that will make up "Part V: The Rock." When they are finished, I'll have LNDtH loaded up to post through February or March and I'll be able to focus November on writing the sequel to Redtail.

Originally, I thought about calling this sequel "Wapiti" which is an Indian word for Elk. I thought that Laramie's call that would send her back in time would be the elk's bugle. In doing some research, though, I realize the story is likely to start (in the 1860s) in the East and if Laramie landed there she'd be stuck until her host moved West. Not many Elk in Boston. Still don't have a satisfactory animal call for her. I'm leaning toward "Raven." If you've got an idea, let me know.

To help the voices in my head, I've downloaded a number of westerns and romances set in and around the Civil War era or written before 1900. Since the AYU lady of the 1860s will actually have a voice in this new work, I'd like it to be authentic--or as much so as I can.

I found the people of Laramie--especially in the Coe Library at the University of Wyoming (Go Pokes!)--to be very helpful. I'm thinking of returning there for a week of research to try to get a good contemporary voice for Laramie (the girl). Ideally, I'd have small focus groups of college women who are actually from the area sit and chat about a variety of subjects while I listened and recorded. Just trying to figure out how to approach that with the library staff without coming across like a creeper. Hmmm. I'm not. A creeper. Really.

Well, I'm packing up to move to Craters of the Moon in a few minutes. Doubt that I'll have internet again for a couple days until I get near Boise. If you've got ideas for the sequel to Redtail, please shoot them off to me.