Haven’t we all at some time in our lives let ourselves become so immersed in a novel that people can talk to us, make faces at us, and still we remain oblivious to their presence. Well, I have, even if you haven’t. I can remember my mother once said that if the house caught fire I wouldn’t notice until I actually felt the heat. ;)
I’ve spent moments of snatched bliss with mediaeval knights and soldiers of fortune throughout the ages. I've adored secret service agent types, and best of all, fell in love with countless romantic heroes: mostly men in suits or uniform. But of all the books I’ve read, and of all the wonderful authors who brought characters alive for me, not one can I say has influenced my writing. My taste in reading is eclectic at best and if my writing ever inspired by such, I think all my novels would resemble chaos.
Imagine a mediaeval knight on a quest for the Holy Grail galloping his brave mount through a wood. Add a contemporary secret service agent concealed behind a tree expecting a drug baron-cum-weapons dealer to show up for a meeting with some low hood. Now think of a couple in a car looking for a quiet nooky spot. Who gets the first drop? The knight sword to belt, the secret agent gun to holster, and what of the innocent couple who witness events? I guess, on reflection, this sort of sequence could quite easily appear in the TV drama Midsomer Murders: the county where murder is a daily hazard and bizarre plots order of the day. But in a book this theme would only pass muster as paranormal fantasy involving parallel worlds.
Drama lessons in my youth involved the art of scriptwriting, so scene setting and time frames comes easily per scene take and soon fit with overnight dream sequences. The hardest part is the time it takes to get every scene running smooth to next and down in Word format. ;)