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Monday, May 23, 2011

Monday Spotlight: Diane Craver

“Write What You Don’t Know”

When people give writing advice, one of the things they say is "Write what you know."

Well, I think that is true to a certain extent, but not always. I believe you should be adventuresome and write what you don't know. Get out of your comfort zone and experience life. If you don't feel like doing something new, like skydiving, driving race cars, playing rugby, bungee jumping, or flying your own plane, then research what you have never done and write about it. You don't have to actually do something that scares the heck out of you. Let your characters do the unique hobbies.

That's what happened with my idea to have skydiving in my book, Whitney in Charge. I have never gone skydiving, but from what I have read about skydiving and heard from my daughter's friend, it sounds like an awesome thing to experience. Consequently, I decided to put this unusual hobby in a romance. I'd have the heroine jump an altitude of 9,000 feet or higher even though she's scared of heights. She would feel the exhilaration of freefall and then would enjoy the scenic glide under parachute back to earth. I could get my thrill from writing about skydiving, but yet wouldn't have to risk my own life to do it.

I put my own fear of heights into the mind-set of Whitney. When her older sisters, Shannon and Regan tell her in the first chapter to go skydiving to meet hot guys, Whitney refuses.

We happen to have the perfect place for my husband Tom and me to go skydiving. I think it might be a neat thing to do to celebrate the anniversary of our first date. Sure, we still do something special on the first date anniversary even though we have been married for years. There happens to be a place to go skydiving in Xenia, Ohio, just outside of the greater Dayton-Miami Valley area and is situated on a private airport and offers a large landing for the skydivers. It's within a reasonable driving distance to where we live, which is twenty-five miles from Cincinnati. What is so remarkable about this location is I met Tom in Xenia. We were both employed at an orphanage for our first teaching jobs and lived on campus with the kids.

Until I get the courage to try skydiving, get checked out by a cardiologist, and make a new will, I can live through my character Whitney. She is not a wimp and overcomes two main fears in my book, Whitney in Charge.

Do you have any exotic hobbies? Or do you have some you'd love to try but haven't yet?

Please join me tomorrow for a discussion about Creating Memorable Characters.

Former TV producer Whitney Benson meets two eligible bachelors, Jack and Ben, who constantly battle for her affection. Which one will she choose? Both men make Whitney realize, even a heart shattered by her husband’s death, can once again be made whole.

But did she have to fall off a cliff to learn that?

Whitney in Charge is available as an ebook for Kindle, Nook, Sony Ereader, Kobo through various outlets.
Buy Link:

Book Trailer: (created by Goddess Fish Promotions)

Find me on the Web at:


Jennifer Shirk said...

Yeah, I totally agree. I think it's interesting for the reader to experience or learn about something different when reading our stories.
Never want to try skydiving but I enjoyed reading about it! :-)

Diane Craver said...

Hi Jennifer,
Thanks for stopping by! I had a blast writing about Whitney and her sisters and of course, researching skydiving!

Stephanie Burkhart said...

I never tried sky diving but I almost did once. I was in the army stationed in Muenster, Germany in 1987 and I was 19. The local British company offered a day long intense training and then at the end of the day you jumped out of a plane. I did the training but when it came time to get in the plane, the winds were too fast so we had to postpone it. I never did jump out of the train.


Unknown said...

Hi! If I were you, I'd just live that sky-diving thing through Whitney, just like you said. No way will I ever go skydiving! Just outside town is a skydiving school/event/recreation place. The entrance on the highway to it features a small plane crashed nose down into the ground. I've never quite figured out the significance of a crashed plane for a skydiving place. Hmmm.
Very good post--I enjoyed it so much. Celia

Diane Craver said...

Hi Steph,
Wow - that's something you didn't have to jump out of the plane. Thanks for sharing. I always enjoy hearing your military stories. You have a rich background to draw from for your great stories!

Diane Craver said...

Hi Celia,
That's funny you mentioned I should just live thru Whitney - I was just thinking that after I emailed the post to LASR. I don't think my heart can take skydiving. Hey, I didn't live to be my age for no reason. LOL

Thanks for visiting - I always love your comments! Hope I get to meet you in person some day and attend one of your tea parties for your book signings. Wouldn't that be fun.

Diane Craver said...

Another spot you can find me on the web is here:

Jewels of the Quill is a group of award-winning women authors. I'm Dame Morganite. Be sure to join us for monthly book giveaways and new gem interviews!

Linda Swift said...

Hi Diane, I'm later here, too. Read Mon-Wed at one time. But skydiving? I don't even want to live above a second floor condo! We have passed up some lovely places when shopping to buy because they were on Floor 3 or higher. I want to be able to jump out the window in case of fire and have a chance of survival. Good article. Let's keep our feet on the ground.

Diane Craver said...

Even though I haven't gone skydiving, I enjoyed writing about it in Whitney in Charge. I hate heights, too, and decided to have a character with my same fears. Whitney doesn't even like to fly. Flying doesn't bother me, though