Friday, May 10, 2013

From the City of Angels - the writing of Saurimonde part 2

It’s funny how sometimes the collective unconscious can seemingly conspire to collide two like minds in an effort to create something new to share with all humankind.

View of Pacific Ocean from El Matador State Beach, Malibu, CA
Last summer my book group (that I haven’t been to in ages and feel terrible about but I’ve been neck deep in writing, editing, and doing research which leaves zero time to read other stuff) read that 50 Shades of Grey book by E.L. James. In fact, I think that’s the last book I read, or tried to read, with the group. See, I got about, oh, maybe a quarter of the way through but I couldn’t force myself to finish it. Not because of the explicit sex. Rather because that whole corporate environment was a huge turnoff to me. Suits do nothing for me. I was completely repelled by the whole mise en scen. So, I put it aside and picked up A Game of Thrones instead, which suited me so much more...

However, as I was reading I began to recall something a friend had mentioned a few months, perhaps even a year, earlier. Scarlett and I were lounging by the pool outside my apartment under the harsh Southern California sun, swaying palm trees, and lush fuchsia bougainvillea spilling over the fence during a much needed break from either designing her website or outlining my Castaneda script when she mentioned that she had an idea to write something of which she felt there wasn't enough: goth erotica. I was immediately intrigued.

Searching the seemingly infinite horizon for inspiration...
I’d read a smattering of what, I suppose, could be considered erotica over the years like Anne Rice’s Exit to Eden and the Sookie Stackhouse series (which, I know, isn’t exactly erotica but it gets pretty steamy at points), but few romance type novels ever appealed to me. However, I’m a sucker for anything goth or dark, occult or supernatural, fantasy or horror. Her idea had all those elements.

So, fast forward about a year to me just having put down 50 Shades of Grey and diving into Game of Thrones, when a light bulb went off in my mind and I sent Scarlett an email saying, “Maybe it's time for your goth erotica?” and she wrote back, “Maybe it is time to dust off the Saurimonde stories - wanna help me write them????”

Exploring the California desert
Of course I said yes despite the fact that I was knee deep in a rewrite for the Castaneda script, but I had hit a wall there because I needed to do more research and desperately desired a fun distraction to cleanse my palate. What could possibly be more fun than a bodice-ripping, gore-filled, supernatural erotic fiction series? So, I set aside the script and dove head first into the world of Saurimonde. A world of real heartbreak and betrayal, flirtation and lust, demons and witches, heroes and villains, love and death. I traversed these intensely emotional scapes alongside Scarlett exploring the nature of human sexuality while delving into deeply personal experiences and twisted fantasies.

Hiking the trails of Griffith Park
Sometimes, however, nothing came. No words. The muse slept. So, I scoured the internet seeking inspiration while listening to my Saurimonde playlist on Spotify. Or drove to Malibu to stare at the seemingly endless horizon of the great Pacific Ocean, silently calling to the universe for ideas. Or I’d head east to the desert to watch the stars, always hoping to catch a shooting star or, better yet, a spaceship. Other times I’d disappear into the Los Angeles forest or Griffith Park to listen to the trees whisper in the breeze waiting for the words to come like pictures in my mind. Mini-movies only I can see and hear. Always building off Scarlett’s detailed outline and carefully crafted character descriptions until those characters became me and I them and they crept into my dreams at night.

When the forest is my office...
And now it is finished. Well, almost, I’m still halfway through the final edit as I type this, but it’s so close and by the time this blog is posted it shall be done to be released to the wild, to the world for all to experience, for you.

Welcome to Saurimonde: Do you dare to go there?


Melissa S.
City of Angels, April 6th, 2013

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