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April 2019: What Comes First
~ Viviana MacKade ~

CTR asked:

Which comes first when you start a new story? The title? The characters’ names? The plot? Explain your starting process and what you need before you can write the first words.

Viviana MacKade said:

What comes first is always anybody’s guess.

Up to now, all the books I wrote, and the one I’m currently writing, came from different places.

For the prequel of Crescent Creek, as for book 1 and 2, I had a theme. They were all part of a collection, so while I had a lot of liberty with plot and characters, I had to stay within the theme.

A rock star for Crescent Creek Prequel, Independence Day for All Those Miles I Walked, and an outlaw for Painted Love. The story and the characters came in a very organic way, I worked my way into the theme and used it to build the story.

The last book in the series, His Midnight Sun, came from Aidan, the hero. The book wasn’t supposed to happen at all, but he poked at something and I couldn’t let him go. Still, at first, I wasn’t planning on writing his story. Then my amazing Critic Partner read Painted Love and she told me, literally, “Aidan is getting his own book, right?”

Her words made me surrender. Aidan had his way and his story, and I’m so glad my CP pointed that out! As of now, Aidan is my favorite hero. I love them all, but with Aidan is different.

I’m writing two fantasies now. One is what I might call a high fantasy, and it came out from my love for mythology–Old Norse mythology, to be more precise.

I loved a character in the Poetic Edda, and I thought it was going to be so cool bring her here, on today’s Earth. Of course, the story took me, her, and the hero into a fantastic world, a place to explore but full of dangers.

The other fantasy came from a flashing idea. I had just come out from the shower and I thought I saw a shadow in the bedroom. Of course, I checked, and it was nothing. But it made me think, what if I had been greeted by a ghost? And even more, what my scientist husband would say if I told him I had seen one? That’s where the story started.

Although I’m fairly good with titles, no story came from one. Yet. Because I was walking in my town some time ago, and it was a winter day. Not cold, never cold in Florida, but chillier than usual and I thought that it was such an oddity for here. A title popped in my mind–I’m not gonna disclose it, come on. Let me surprise you! There’s a story there, and it will start from that title.

As far as what I need before I start a story, it really depends on what the characters do and when/where the story takes place. For Crescent Creek I had to research a lot for the character’s jobs, a little more for Aidan and Summer, him being a sculptor and her being a doctor. For the High fantasy, I had to fast-read all the Norse Cosmology. I say fast-read because while I wanted to know the basics, I didn’t want to get stuck in what was written. I read here and there, and let my imagination run along those lines.

And for my ghost story, I’m at the very beginning. Noah, the hero, is a psychologist which mean I had to research how a session works, a therapist job, and learned a lot of false myth around the subject. Rebecca, the heroine, is a novelist, a field I feel like I’m prepared a little more.


Crescent Creek Collection by Viviana MacKade cover

Crescent Creek Collection

[Contemporary suspense, small town]

From the cold Canadian border, the US1 runs along the east coast with patience. Southbound, always south, until it reaches the Sunshine State.

Not the fastest way, sure, but if you have time to drive it all the way down, you might find yourself lost in one of the coastal towns that dot the US1 like little jewels.

Maybe that town’s name is Crescent Creek.

These are the stories of its people.

All Those Miles I Walked ~ The family man and the gypsy

Painted Love ~ The upstanding citizen and the thief.

His Midnight Sun ~ The wild one and the good doctor.

Come and join them for a collection of stories that will keep you warm even in the coldest day.

Available in Ebook:


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