Monday, December 9, 2013

A Read-fast Writer

When I was writing my first draft of Love Changes. I fasted from reading, reading for pure entertainment that is. The only books I read were books on the craft of writing (the Bird by Bird, The First Five Pages, Write Away, On Writing, How to Write a Damn Good Novel, Stein on Writing by Solstein and countless others) and anything and everything for research.

Romell is an insanely driven stock analyst. Success at his level requires compulsive focus. I refused to fake that with just an Armani suit and a Rolex. I had to study: the market, investing, market terminology (like golden parachute), the black experience on Wall Street, as well as what the market was like when the story was set. In 1995, the market was at the verge of bursting wide open due to advances in technology and the flood of IPOs. I even set up mock portfolios and tracked what-if investments. I could make it rain in Spain if I actually did invest in those stock. All of that to delve into the psyche of a brilliant, overly obsessed, high achieving, finance mogul who just so happens to be black.

Everywhere I went, I carried at least one book with me. And thanks to my Nana, who told me, “In all that you’re reading, make sure you read your Bible,” I carried a pocket (New International) New Testament, too.

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