There are times when I am tempted to play it safe, take the path most traveled and lean toward the conservative side when writing; and then, I stand up at my desk, jump up and down three or four times and shake it off. When I feel this stagnation coming on in life, I jump from a plane, skinny dip or do something else exhilarating to liven things up.
I try to make a conscious effort to live on the edge on paper and in life. That doesn't mean live dangerously, but purposefully. It doesn't mean to live carelessly, but care-freely. I think it means to embrace every chance you're given and whenever you can, choose the path less traveled and leave a piece of yourself on the trail. That is to say, pour a little bit of yourself onto the pages even if it's scary.
Writing my novels has taken me into some dark places. For the Just Call Me Angel series I studied the Mafia and for House of Lies I studied cult groups, past and current. Writing The Candy Shop took me to a new precipice, as I studied the psychological profiles of serial killers. It was uncomfortable and, at times, downright creepy. I dove in nonetheless and I'm thankful I did. The newly found knowledge I embraced added a depth to each story that otherwise would not exist. It scared me, but the positive reviews have made those fearful moments worthwhile. :)
Trying something new or looking at something from a new perspective can cause trepidation. Those feelings are normal. If it scares you a little... you're on the right path. ~