Today marks one year since Spirit Lake first released. I felt so many emotions while writing this novel and I still feel so many as I reflect on the past year. This was my baby, my first born, one that will forever hold a special place in my heart. I am still very much in love with the characters, the storyline, and the town of Spirit Lake, and as I gather new ideas for the second book in the series, in light of this special occasion, I decided to give a little BTS on what it took to bring this love story to life.
Inspo behind the storyline:
I’ve always had discussions with people about whether or not close friends of the opposite sex could remain friends without one or both parties involved developing romantic feelings for the other. While I’ve heard opinions that covered both ends (mine being “no, they cannot”), I wanted to see what a story of my own would look like—thus—Spirit Lake was born.
Inspo behind the characters:
There isn’t one person in particular that I chose to model any of my characters. Instead, they were a mixture of several people I know or have known over the years, myself and my husband included. For instance, Teylor loves Chai—as do I. Her clothing style also mimicked my own. Jamie’s career choice was transportation brokerage, which is an industry that my husband has been apart of for many years.
To be completely transparent, I do and did choose actors and or models from the internet as physical inspiration for most of the characters in the story, but I will never reveal them. It’s important to me that the readers come up with their own imaginative ideas. I mean, that’s the point of reading, right? Who do the characters remind you of? It’s been quite interesting seeing who folks have conjured up when I’ve asked them to cast the characters (lol).
Inspo behind the town:
My goodness, one of the questions I get the most from my readers is “where can I find this town?” Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but you can’t. It doesn’t exist. It was completely thought up out of this brain of mine. I wanted to create a beautiful place that was predominately African American (based on the fact that droves of African Americans moved west after the abolishment of slavery in order to build a better life for themselves, as opposed to remaining in the south where they were still being murdered and discriminated against by those who thought they should have remained slaves), Christian, and located in Northern Arizona. Unheard of, right? Well, even though it doesn’t exist, I did travel up north to Flagstaff, AZ to get a little inspiration:
Book two in the series…that’s what! I’m hoping to release the second installment of Spirit Lake some time late next year. You all will be able to see what your favorite characters have been up to since the last book ended, and what challenges lay ahead.
So many of you have asked about it and are keeping me accountable to actually finishing the series. I am so thankful for your truth, love, and support. Y’all make this writing thing so much easier. Lol. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for loving Spirit Lake as much as I do.
Always love and blessings,