It’s Time to Start Planning my Next Novel

Hands typing on a computer keyboard.
© Can Stock Photo / Kurhan

Now that my newest contemporary romance novel, The Letter, has been successfully launched, it’s time to start planning my next contemporary romance novel. And, as typically happens, my inspiration comes for the strangest places.

A few months ago I was reminiscing about one of my cousins whom I hadn’t thought about in some time. Years ago, she starred on a soap opera, and I was a budding artist who created the cover art for her fan club newsletter. She also invited me to visit the set. It was exciting indeed. Few people get to see what happens behind the scenes on a network television show. When she left the show, she invited me back for her final taping and her wrap party, which, interestingly enough, was like your typical office party. Kind of low key with people stopping by to have a drink and say congratulations and then chit chat amongst themselves. The only difference was this office party included many famous faces. 

So fast forward to the present day. As I was reminiscing the thought hit me. Why not use the wrap party as a starting point for my next novel? Only this time something really interesting will happen at the party. And why not have my next lead character be a successful actress who walks away from Hollywood for good? Then, a few weeks later, as I was still playing around with ideas, the Harvey Weinstein scandal erupted. And while it’s nice to have art imitating life, if threw a bit of a wrench into my plans. I wanted my antagonist to be a manipulative cad. What I didn’t want was for my book to become politicalized, or for people to say, “Oh, you must have gotten your idea from the Harvey Weinstein scandal,” when I actually didn’t. So, I’ll have to come up with a way to make my antagonist different from Mr. Weinstein. 

The working title is, The Scandal, although it’s subject to change. And, just so you know, the lead character will not bear any resemblance my cousin. My character is a unique individual with her own set of issues, and her life will be very different from my cousin’s. 

If all goes according to plan, The Scandal should be out in about a year. Give or take a couple of months.

Marina Martindale