My Writing Process
by Marlene M. Bell
In my first book, STOLEN OBSESSION, I set out to write a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants romance. What I ended up writing were unlikeable characters in a work of women’s fiction—with five different sub plots. My developmental editor easily caught my errors and recommended that I pick one main plot and work a single story per novel. With all of the sub-plot ideas, I gravitated to a longer series with my main character, Annalisse Drury.
The unpleasant experience of tearing my original story apart convinced me to outline each book first so I’d have a roadmap to travel. The way I work each book now is to write scenes/chapters on 3×5 cards, then keep an adjoining notebook with the smaller details, chapter by chapter, filling in the foreshadowing as I go. In addition to the cards and journal, I also create a folder with character sheets for each person in my book. Their likes, dislikes, personality quirks, attributes, descriptions, etc. In that way, I can refer to this cheat sheet for future books and keep my characters from veering off in the wrong direction or mixing up their personalities.
When I read interesting passages in books, I also make small notes. The way in which authors drop backstory and use their senses to move the story forward interest me the most. I keep that special notebook on the coffee table for new story ideas as they come to me, or from scenes in movies. Sometimes scenes come to me in my dreams!
Annalisse Series, Book 2
A small amount of Romance
(not the focal point of the story)
Date Published: 12-11-2019
Publisher: Ewephoric Publishing
Antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury drives to her family farm in upstate New York to consult with Aunt Kate about her troubled relationship with Greek tycoon, Alec Zavos. When Annalisse arrives, she learns the beloved farm she expects to inherit is for sale.
That same morning, they find a stranger’s body decaying in the barn. Then her aunt vanishes.
In Spent Identity, Annalisse and Alec join forces for the second time. They must find the mastermind behind her aunt’s abduction before Kate’s health issues worsen. Was the corpse in the barn a coincidence or a warning? The clock ticks for Annalisse to find her aunt and repair what she has left with the man she loves.
About the Author
Marlene M. Bell is an award-winning writer and acclaimed artist as well as a photographer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of Sheep!, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living, and Sheep Industry News, to name a few. SPENT IDENTITY is the second book in the Annalisse Series.
Her catalog venture, Ewephoric, began in 1985 out of her desire to locate personalized sheep stationery. She rarely found sheep products through catalogs and set out to design them herself. Ewephoric gifts online can be found at https://www.TexasSheep.com. Her books at: https://www.marlenembell.com
Marlene and her husband, Gregg, reside in beautiful East Texas on a wooded ranch with their dreadfully spoiled horned Dorset sheep, a large Maremma guard dog named Tia, along with Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats that believe they rule the household—and do.