With the release of the second in The Hunted Series, we welcome back Dena Netherton to Thyme for Writers as she shares how she gets her ideas for her stories, her characters, and her settings!
When I tell people I’m a writer, many of them ask me, “How do you get your ideas for your stories?”
The first couple of times I was asked this, I had to think about it for a minute or two. Because ideas come from everywhere: shopping excursions, movies, books, the news, people-watching, travel.
For example, one of my most awful bad guys, Dade Colton, in the Hunting Haven three-part series, came to my mind as a conglomerate of several villains from real life, and some from horror movies I’ve watched and found particularly scary. Dade’s creepy, toothy grin whenever he is threatening Haven is something I saw a horror movie villain do to his victims. Now, wouldn’t you expect a villain to snarl and frown whenever he’s doing something bad? The smile makes me shudder, because it shows Dade’s lack of conscience, and even enjoyment while terrorizing Haven.
How about book settings? What makes you decide where to place your story?
The ideas for the settings of my books come mostly from my travels. Some place sparks my imagination, either because of the town itself, its shops and museums and institutions. Sometimes, when I travel, I’ll see or overhear a fascinating person in a Starbucks or restaurant, or see him or her walking down the sidewalk, and it makes my brain begin to generate ideas. Or sometimes the scenery and the weather moves me and makes my brain begin to pop out scenarios.
But how did you come up with the idea for the Misty Mountain Retreat Center where Haven hides from Dade?
That idea came from real life. After I graduated from high school, I worked for a summer as a camp counselor at a Christian camp and retreat center in the California coastal redwood forests outside Santa Cruz. As a young woman, working with other young men and women, there was, inevitably, romantic drama. Those months in the mountains gave me fodder for stories later on.
A couple of years ago—and after I’d already written Haven’s Hope—I spent the week at a lovely Christian retreat in the Pacific Northwest, and found, to my surprise that the real-life place was incredibly similar to my fictional Misty Mountain Retreat.
What about the tall, handsome, and brilliant Dr. Petter Eriksen?
Haven’s romantic hero, Dr. Petter Eriksen, is a blend of several wonderful and godly men I have known in school and in my professional world. Making Petter Norwegian was purely a selfish decision. I’m proud of my Scandinavian heritage and wanted to pay tribute to my ancestors and their plucky resolve to immigrate in the early 20th century to America to build a better life for themselves and their children. Thank you, Oluv and Sigrid, my sweet, heart-working grandparents. I miss you!
Now that you know a bit about my process of writing, I hope you’ll read on to find out more about Haven’s Hope, which released on Feb. 6th, 2018.
Haven’s Hope: Feel the fear—Savor the romance
HAVEN’S HOPE gives one woman’s answer to the question…
Does God still love me even when bad things happen?
Is good really more powerful than evil?
How can I be freed from guilt?
Beautiful and talented Haven Ellingsen is about to discover that evil doesn’t take a holiday. Haven has escaped the man who relentlessly hunted her in the Cascade Mountains. But when an old friend form her dangerous past shows up unexpectedly to warn her that Dade Colton is determined to re-capture her, Haven makes the only safe decision: to go into hiding once more. But where? Who can she trust? If only she could tell someone about her tragic secret. But Dade’s threat to kill any one who helps her might put that person’s life in jeopardy, too.
Dr. Petter Eriksen saves lives every day at Mercy Hospital Emergency Department. Driven by guilt after the accidental death of his little sister, he can’t believe in a good God. But when a beautiful and mysterious young woman moves into the cabin on his uncle’s Christian Retreat, Petter wonders if her love and simple faith have the power to shatter the barrier he has erected around his heart. And can he save her from a madman?
Sometimes you hide; sometimes you stand and fight.
About the author:
Dena Netherton has always loved the thrill of suspense-filled movies and books. One day it dawned on her, she could actually put down on paper her own action-packed stories and life-threatened characters that had been knocking around inside her head for decades.
When she’s not writing, Dena loves to play piano and guitar, read good books, spend time with people, and hike the Cascade Mountains.
Dena is active in her church as a worship leader, leader in Women’s Ministries, and director of a women’s prayer ministry. She also volunteers at a Crisis Pregnancy Clinic. Dena and her husband live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
Find out more about Dena’s books through her website and newsletter: denanetherton.me.
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