Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Finding Inspiration in the Most Unlikeliest of Places

A few months ago, while on one of my eight hour drives from New Orleans to Austin, I was inspired by a Sheryl Crow song that was playing on the radio. Just the title, My Favorite Mistake, conjured all kinds of yummy story ideas.

When I started working on the actual story, I decided to set it in a fictional Louisiana town, complete with a main street at the heart of it. Problem is, I was having a hard time finding inspiration for my quaint little town. I did Google searches using phrases such as “Main Street” and “Small Town USA” but nothing clicked for me.

Enter the small lakeside town of Marblehead, Ohio.

Yes, Ohio.

I recently visited a friend who is lucky enough to live steps away from the shores of beautiful Lake Erie in the charming lake town of Marblehead.

I had no idea that a small town in Northern Ohio would serve as inspiration for my fictional town of Gauthier, Louisiana, but it did.

Here are a few shots of the sights I found in Marblehead. I can't wait to breathe life into these pictures by bringing my characters into the shops and restaurants.

I'll have to have at least one scene where my hero and heroine have coffee under the awning of the local coffee shop. This one was called Spill The Beans, which I thought was just adorable, but I've got another name in mind for my coffee shop.

I'm not sure if the town of Gauthier will have an art gallery, but this building would be perfect for the salon that will play a part in the story.

This building is the old schoolhouse in Marblehead, but in Gauthier, I think it's going to be the church at the center of the town.

Can anyone say hardware store/bait shop?

Yet another shot that just screams Small Town, USA.

I can't wait to get back to writing this book!