As I’ve mentioned in earlier blog posts Time Does Not Stop had very humble and simple beginnings. I went through various names for the story including The Prophecy, Ludlet Forest and the like. It was only about two years ago that I was looking up names online and came across the current title. I liked to think it would sound cool in a foreign language if it were to ever be translated (Portuguese: O Tempo Não Para, Norwegian: Tiden Stopper Ikke, German: Die Zeit Hört Nicht Auf).

I had all my work crammed haphazardly in a plastic folder but as the content grew I had to upgrade to a larger lever arch file. I wrote with my favourite unicorn pen until it ran out of ink and ocassionally used my fancy Parker pen. I liked to use colourful post-it notes as reminders and markers in my folder. I also started separating my story into chapters including sections for brain stormed information that I had printed and hand written.

I had the idea of rival towns and clashing characters back in 2010 (which makes me feel old). I began writing as soon as I could find some blank note paper. Once I was inspired (“in the zone” as I called it) I was unstoppable! My hand writing was horrible back then and has slightly improved since.

Back in the days before Pinterest I would do a lot of scrolling for character ideas on DeviantArt.com. I knew from the beginning that I wanted Alex to be tall, lean with long black hair. I have so many images saved to my Pinterest board but below is one of the earliest images I printed. I had several ideas for Indiana also but didn’t print any. She always had long hair and was very much a tomboy (having grown up with multiple brothers in a small house) which made her tougher than most girls. She was fierce and resilient yet could be sensitive and caring with the need arose. Alex was over-privileged and took many things for granted – including the house help, all his luxurious belongs and fancy designer clothes. He wished to be treated as a prince (although he held no royal title).

Throughout the course of my writing I had to do a tonne of googling so that I wasn’t saying the words “said” and “laughed” over and over again! I learned about 100 different versions of each just to change it up a bit so it wasn’t repetitive and boring (in my opinion). Wordhippo.com was a great help and so were numerous dictionary and thesaurus sites.

I came up with names for fake limousine companies, clothing and jewellery makers, game shops, newspapers, nursing homes and loads more. Like they say: there is a lot in a name! Many of the characters went through many changes in their names and appearance. I even had ideas for characters that fell through – such as forest elves, centaurs, nymphs, evil sidekicks, and more. I’m not good at inventing magical worlds so I kept it simple.

I have always strived to write something that isn’t out there yet and hasn’t been written before. I wanted to do the most original work I could and make it my own! I’ve never read anything quite like Time Does Not Stop but I hope to find something similar one day 😉