Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Cheapest Form of Travel

by Michelle Gagnon

Kelli asks:
You write nail-biting, suspenseful thrillers that pack a wallop and leave readers hungry for more…how do you detox after delving into that kind of stress and adrenalin?

Liquor, and lots of it.


Thanks for saying so, Kelli. My goal is always to keep my readers up all night.

I have to confess, there are days when it's hard to come down off that high. It's always a little disconcerting to look up and realize that I have to switch from a chase scene across abandoned WWII naval vessels to making dinner (one excuse for why I don't do much of the cooking). But that's the writer's life, I suppose- we live a significant chunk of it vicariously, through our characters. Aside from my immediate family, I've spent most of the past four years with Kelly Jones and Jake Riley. I have days where I don't even leave the house, yet feel like I've spent the majority of it somewhere else (at the moment, Mexico City, where my next book is set).

But then, that's the benefit of writing, and reading. Books can take you all around the world without leaving the comfort of your armchair. Saves a lot on airfare, that's for sure.


Rebecca Cantrell said...

Travel and detox? You're making it sound very glamorous, Michelle! A kind of rockstar existence. :)

It is interesting changing gears after a tough day. Having a "real" life keeps it all in perspective, or maybe all out of perspective.

Shane Gericke said...

Rebecca! You mean we're NOT rock stars? But ... they promised!

Sometimes, Michelle, after writing a particularly powerful scene, my real life seems dull and washed-out for awhile. I mean, really, making supper cannot compare to gunfights, robbery and murder.

Tastes better, though ...

Kelli Stanley said...

Wine or bourbon, Michelle? ;)

What tends to lingeringly bother me is getting in the twisted head of the antagonist. I'm a light sleeper as it is--reading Becky's book rekindled my "there's a Nazi in the house nightmares."

But then again, writing from that POV has it's own charms ... as long as you can chase them away with a good whiskey sour. ;)


Michelle Gagnon said...

Funny you said that, Kelli- after Boneyard I took a solemn oath to avoid writing about serial killers for at least the next book because the research was just too unsettling. I felt like it was starting to taint my world view, and not in a good way.

I have a friend who is a "recovered" bank robber, Shane. And despite the fact that he's resolved to go straight after an eight year stint in prison, when he went to see that Dillinger movie last summer, he gushed about it how thrilling in some ways that life was. Here's his blog post about it: