The number one question from fans to writers: "Where do you get your ideas from?"
A forgiving, patient writer will smile and move on to the next question or give a vague complacency that won't make sense.
A rude, tired, hassled writer with no bed manners might quip, "How do you finish your homework?"
It's an amateur question filled with awe and amazement that I too think about asking my favorite authors. But what the question really alludes to is, how did you build a world that is so real?
Letting your mind wander in the still moments you have, or sometimes don't have, gives me the pieces I need to complete the world, the characters and the story.
A book isn't finished until the author says it is. Sometimes I feel the reason why there are series is because both reader and writer don't want to let go of their characters. Exploring the world I've discovered can be too great not to delve into more.
Here are the top 3 amusing questions I've seen asked of authors:
1) What celebrity would you cage-match?
2) Tell me about the most inspiring place for your writing.
3) Do you write drafts with pen and paper or keyboard?
Writers will sometimes get questions they don't want to answer. Heart rates go up, eyebrows drip sweat and hands literally shrivel up from the lack of moisture.
Top 3 questions you might want to stay away from (unless the author gives permission) and why:
1) What's your writing process?
Every writer has one. They are all different. Some know what their process is. Some don't. But it's like asking, when you make love to your signification other, do you kiss?
2) Where do you get your ideas?
Well, ideas might be from real life. Some from fictionalizing fantasy. Ray Bradbury used to say "from everything and everyone around me."
3) Who's your agent? Can you give me an introduction?
This one is great! Next time someone asks this question, I might ask them if I can date their boyfriend/husband. Because agent/writer relationships are very intimate, it would be a valid request.
Now go forth--and ask your favorite writer a question!