I’m working on a new story on spec for Loose-Id. It’s tentatively titled Pussycat Death Squad, and the heroine is North African. I got the idea from a story I read on Grata’s blog about Muammar Quadaffi’s all female bodyguard. They have to be chaste virgins and of course, deadly. Given those parameters the story pretty much writes itself!

I’ve mentioned before the impact that music has when I’m writing. Of course, Rock Star was a natural for that, inspired as it was by the death of one of my all-time fave rockers, Layne Staley of Alice in Chains. My husband claims he won’t read it because to his mind it’s basically a love letter to Layne. I listened to a lot of Alice while I was writing it. That band was destroyed by Layne’s drug addiction, much as Zeppelin couldn’t go on after the loss of Jon Bonham. The issue of substance abuse comes up so frequently in music that I really wanted to explore those themes and the impact that it has on the band members.

Try a Little Tenderness, was of course, inspired in part by one of my fave R&B songs of all time. The only song I Iove more is Change is Going To Come. I wanted that book to be über fabulous for two reasons: One, I thought it could be my break-out to New York. (Hey, a girl can dream, can’t she? But more importantly, I knew it had to live up to a much-beloved song. Only my readers can tell me if I’ve accomplished that goal. I certainly did my best. 

Kashmir is on an album called Physical Graffiti. I can remember where I was the first time I heard this song, I was in the backseat of our old Ford Galaxie 500 coming home from school. I rocked out so hard I got a nosebleed. It’s the first album I can ever remember buying and I was only eleven years old. Looking back now, I’m amazed at my parent’s tolerance. We were allowed to read pretty much anything, and music of all kinds were welcome. I’m sure that if my mama had known more about Zeppelin she might have forbidden me to buy them, but being a blues fan she didn’t know that much about rock. Of course, given Zeppelin’s blues origins, maybe she rocked out a little bit too! 

The Eastern influences of the song seem fitting to my North African heroine, and I’ve been listening to it a lot as I develop this character, the first non-American heroine I’ve ever written. A music critic compared the song to African trance music, and I have listened to a little of that, and they’re right. Anyway, it’s the awesomest song of a beyond awesome band, and I thought I’d share it with you. 


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