Subscribe to my newsletter
I have a strong visual sense. I need to imagine my stories as if they were a movie that was playing out in my head. To help me with this, I painstakingly collect photos, video clips, and acting scenes of actors, nature, food, and objects that will help me visualize my character and the novel's settings. This is my favorite part of the writing process, and I would spend months, even years, visualizing and searching for the right lead characters before starting to write. At times, my photo collection was dominated by people who resembled my character as closely as possible or who acted like them (mannerisms, voice, beliefs). Allow me to show you some of the finalized visuals for Sins of a Woman. As you can see, most of the people in my character photos are actors. I hold my own movie scene auditions to see which actors have characteristics similar to the characters I envision. Please note that I claim no ownership of any of these photos.
Update: I've added some of the food featured in the story for your pleasure. I'll also include some visuals from the surroundings later on.
Sometimes it's simply a person's performance in a film. Gerard Butler blew me away in the film 300, which made me think of him as Jethro. His voice and physical appearance also had an impact on the character. This image of Leonidas 1 helped me envision the strict, law-abiding Jethro who always wore a scowl.
Cassius' creation is based on so many scenes from various characters that it is impossible to list them all. However, one major character had an impact on his appearance and charm. When I imagined Cassius with his piercing ice blue eyes and dark hair, I immediately thought of actor Ian Somerhalder, and Ian's charm as an actor also helped me create his personality.
According to the New York Times article by Ferretti (1983), "Some Greeks will tell you that the origin of stuffed vine leaves goes back to the time when Alexander the Great besieged Thebes. Food became so scarce that the Thebans cut what meat they had into little bits and rolled it in grape leaves".
This delicacy can be traced back to the ancient Phoenicians, who began to salt and dry grey mullet roe. It is best known as a Greek delicacy, similar to modern-day Caviar. The roe is extracted, cleaned, salted, pressed, and dried. They are then washed and placed between two weighted wooden boards to press out any remaining liquid and to give them a solid, flat shape. Finally, they are hung and air-dried until they have taken on their characteristic coral color. After that, the small logs are dipped in beeswax.