The Most Fun Thing About Writing

By Linda O. Johnson

Hey, our blog is still here, and I couldn’t be more delighted. I was pondering what to write about now, and came up with what I hope is a fun topic: my thoughts about the most fun thing about writing.

Do I know yet? No! But I’ve gotten a lot of ideas. And I’ve been writing for a long time.

My thoughts? First, even if I set a story somewhere real, near me, the fun thing about it is figuring out what can be different, and what my protagonist can learn about it—and tell me! For one thing, since most of what I write are mysteries and romantic suspense, people can get hurt or even killed in those environments I find fairly safe in real life. So where’s a good place to murder someone where the mystery can be resolved well and quickly enough in a story? A real place? A fictional place?

Even more important is those characters, especially my protagonists. They’re not me, but they contain some of my characteristics. The character closest to me was in my first mystery series, the Kendra Ballantyne, Pet-Sitter Mysteries. Kendra was a lawyer who lived in the Hollywood Hills with her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Lexie. At the time I was writing about her, I was a practicing lawyer, and one of my Cavaliers was named Lexie. And yes, I live in the Hollywood Hills.

Other protagonists aren’t quite as close, but still had characteristics I like and admire. The spinoff series from Kendra was the Pet Rescue Mysteries, which of course contained dogs and other animals—and I was volunteering a lot at local rescue organizations when I wrote it. In my Barkery & Biscuits Mysteries, my protagonist owned a bakery for dog treats—and was owned by a dog named Biscuit. In my Superstition Mysteries, my protagonist owned a dog named Pluckie. And currently, in my Alaska Untamed Mysteries under my first pseudonym, Lark O. Jensen, the protagonist, a naturalist, introduces tourists to all sorts of wonderful Alaskan wildlife, including seals and bears and wolves—and yes, she brings her own dog Sasha along on her tour boats.

And in the Harlequin Romantic Suspense stories in the various series I create, yes, dogs are involved. All my stories do contain suspense, whether they’re mysteries or not, and even those I’m asked to write when I can’t always include dogs. And they contain at least a touch of romance, often more.

So… setting is fun. Characters are fun. Killing people vicariously, and not for real, of course,  can be fun. And creating romances can be fun.

Plus, various animals are fun. Dogs are fun.

Hey, for me, maybe the most fun thing about writing involves one of the most fun things in my life: dogs.

So what’s the most fun thing about writing for you?

Photo by Austin Kirk on Unsplash 

14 thoughts on “The Most Fun Thing About Writing”

  1. Linda, you had a great idea for your post- to talk about your ideas. Readers like to know about an author’s personal life – at least those the author chooses to share – and I was intrigued with how you decided which criminal path to take with your many series. I guess it is inevitable our own lives feature in some form or another in our books, and I enjoy how you cover your dogs’ worlds so effectively- if not exhaustingly!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I enjoyed both pondering it and writing the post, as I do with my stories. Yes, I think there’s generally at least a little that’s autobiographical in what we write–and my love of dogs helps with that!


  2. What a timely idea, Linda. Bringing fun back into our writing lives! (Instead of worrying about deadlines and sales figures.) And your great love of dogs always makes your writing about them so authentic. “Write what you know” comes to mind. So, thank you for reminding us about the FUN we have writing….

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love to set my stories in real places, but change the names. Gets those who know the setting to wonder “Is that restaurant really Andre’s?” I also have fun including my real cats in my stories. Even though some of them now live across the rainbow bridge, they live forever on the page.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Great idea, Maggie. I generally don’t use my real dogs in my stories. I suspect readers might get tired of reading about Cavalier King Charles Spaniels all the time. I’m an addict, even though I love all dogs. But I did include my Lexie in my Kendra books, and she’s now over the rainbow bridge.


  4. One of the most enjoyable parts of writing for me is plumbing my memory. I like to incorporate places I’ve been to as settings. Although my characters are all fictitious, I often give them certain characteristics of people I’ve known, both physical and personal. Some dialogue and even entire scenes are based on experiences I’ve had or have heard from others. This way I can share some wonderful, or at least interesting memories with readers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s an excellent way not only to remember special locations–and people–but also to determine which details to include for moving your story forward, Miko.


  5. Why we write is a thought to ponder. As for me, I have always liked to create new worlds whether it was with my puppet shows as a kid or novels and short stories now. I guess we writers enjoy that process.

    Liked by 1 person

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