Barbara Longley: Where do I get my inspiration?

barbar longley headshotI’ve been writing for a long while, and to tell the truth, I’ve noticed a shift in how I perceive my world because of the writing. Everything and anything is fair game when it comes to the muse. My *inspiration antennae* are always out, and muse fodder can come from anywhere: the news, overheard conversations, glimpses of real life drama, talking to people, reading non-fiction and fiction, seeing interesting people walking down the street, daydreaming and bouncing ideas around with other writers. A huge source of inspiration for me comes from country-western music. Each song is like a novella, and most country songs have to do with finding love, losing love, grief, tragedy, happy endings, and overcoming adversity, or not. It’s all good stuff, except for the drinking songs, which I skip.

The hero in THE DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES, released April 23rd through Montlake Romance, was inspired by a song on an Eli Young Band album entitled: War on a Desperate Man. In fact, the entire first scene and Ryan Malloy’s character sprang from that song, which I listened to over and over while writing chapter one. It’s very moving, and the way I interpreted the lyrics came pouring out.  Now, it might now be how the band intended for the music to be interpreted, but that’s how it goes. The artist puts it out their, and we get to find meaning for ourselves, and in my case, it will infuse my writing.

Book Blurb:

Ryan Malloy has lost it all. After his fiancée dies in a tragic accident, he enlists in the barbara longleyarmy, only to lose his best friend in a roadside bombing. Wracked with guilt and grief, Ryan finds life unbearable—until a job offer from his former commander gives him a glimmer of hope. And in the tiny town of Perfect, Indiana, the man who thought he had nothing left to live for meets the only woman who can tempt him into risking his battered heart one last time…

Paige Langford has it all: wealth, beauty, and ambition. But when her boyfriend’s betrayal leads to the loss of her job and her reputation, she retreats to her brother’s rural Indiana home to regroup. There she meets Ryan Malloy, a gruff, hard-drinking loner whose surly temper can’t hide the haunted misery in his eyes. He is everything Paige never wanted, yet he may be exactly what she needs—if only they can overcome their personal demons to forge a love strong enough to save them both.


As a child, Barbara Longley moved frequently, learning early on how to entertain herself with stories. Adulthood didn’t tame her peripatetic ways: she has lived on an Appalachian commune, taught on an Indian reservation, and traveled the country from coast to coast. After having children of her own, she decided to try staying put, choosing Minnesota as her home. By day, she puts her master’s degree in special education to use teaching elementary school. By night, she explores all things mythical, paranormal, and newsworthy, channeling what she learns into her writing.

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Barbara Longley: Where do I get my inspiration? — 6 Comments

  1. You’re right–everything is fair game for inspiration! I see a novel everywhere I look. Thanks for an interesting post and I’ll bet you’ll be writing like crazy this summer!

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