by Alexandra Benedict
It was a dream that inspired Mary Shelley to write FRANKENSTEIN. Robert Louis Stevenson also conceived THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE in a dream.
It's a wonderful thing for a writer to go to sleep one night and wake up with a story idea. In the fall of 2006, I was thrilled to experience the phenomena for myself.
I was taking a break after completing my latest book. I wasn't really thinking about my next project, just wanting to rest my brain. But even when I'm not thinking, I guess I really am. One ordinary night, I went to sleep...and had the most vivid dream.
I was standing on a deserted beach. There was a rocky coastline behind me and a storm was coming. I could feel the wild winds and hear the churning waves. Soon, I spotted a woman approach the jagged cliffs. She had long, black hair and violet eyes. She was sobbing. She didn't say anything to me, but I knew why she was upset: she was fleeing from her wicked fiancé. Slowly, she removed all her clothes and stretched out her hands...before she threw herself off the cliffs and into the swirling waters below.
As soon as I opened my eyes, the rest of the story flooded into my head. That morning, I had the plot for my next book: TOO DANGEROUS TO DESIRE. In it, a lonely and distinguished lord risks all to save a secret royal bride from a wicked prince.
Lonely and overcome with grief, after a painful loss in his past, Adam Westmore walks the ocean's edge in solitude.
Forced to marry a depraved foreign prince, Evelyn Waye believes she has no choice but to throw herself from the jagged cliffs into the crashing surf below.
When Adam sees the enchanting woman in terrible danger, he rescues her from death and brings her back to his humble cottage. Hesitant to reveal his true identity as a distinguished lord, he nonetheless offers to protect her. She needs protection, for the prince will find her--and harm her.
Evelyn wants to trust the handsome stranger who saved her life, but her cursed beauty has made her suspicious of all men...even one whose kindness disarms her, whose gentle touch inspires passion within her.
Soon, Adam and Evelyn are consumed by desire...a dangerous desire that puts their very lives in peril.
Now if only every story idea came to me so clearly.
Have you ever been inspired by a dream? To write a book? Go on a trip? Find a vocation? Do tell!