featuring guest authors; crafting tips and projects; recipes from food editor and sleuthing sidekick Cloris McWerther; and decorating, travel, fashion, health, beauty, and finance tips from the rest of the American Woman editors.

Note: This site uses Amazon affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Friday, March 15, 2013


To survive and pay bills, Kathryn J. Bain has worked as a paralegal for over twenty years. She began writing more than ten years ago and has since published several books. Today she joins us at Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers to talk about the “What if” game. Learn more about Kathryn and her books at her website. -- AP

The “What if” Game

As a writer, I am always asked where do I come up with ideas for my stories. One of the places authors find to be a goldmine is the news. Dick Wolf of Law & Order fame was wonderful at “ripped from the headlines” stories.

How did he do it? He took a news story and asked “what if”. For instance, take the election back in November. Here are just a couple of “what if’s” I came up with:

1.             What if one of the lesser known candidates won,
2.             Or no one won,
3.             Or what if a write-in candidate won?

Another recent news story was the man who kidnapped and held a five year-old boy in a bunker for seven days. Thankfully, the child is now home safe. But what’s a good “what if” for that? Here are some of mine:

1.             What if the man was the boy’s father who thought his son was being abused,
2.             Or a man who lost his son and wanted to replace him,
3.             Or an ex-boyfriend angry with the boy’s mother?

Now it’s your turn. Take the news story of the thirty-three co-workers who won a one million dollar lottery ticket and give us a “what if” on it.   

I’ll almost bet an idea just popped into your head. I’d love to hear what you thought up.

Of course, now you’ll be mad at me because every time you hear a news story, you’ll be asking yourself “what if”.

Knight & Day
A name can mean a lot. You expect a Jasper to be the CEO of a company. Name your son Phineas, well, he might get beat up a lot. However if you chose to call your daughter Trubleh (True blay), you get what you ask for.

Trubleh Lawrence makes a habit out of discovering dead bodies. When the police look to her as a suspect, she has no choice but to search for the killer. If that’s not bad enough, she has to deal with a grandmother who has visions, a co-worker who makes the Wicked Witch of the West look like Shirley Temple, and a guy who constantly reminds her that celibacy is hard when a hot male's around.


Rose Anderson said...

Interesting idea. How about the Pope?
What if the new Pope was a woman?
What if the Pope was a married man?
What if people held primaries and Popes were elected like politicians on election day?

I need more coffee. ;)


Rose, I learned some interesting facts about popes the past week while watching all the news coverage. St. Peter, the first pope, was married, as were many popes for about the first 1,000 years of the church's history.

Kathryn J. Bain said...

Rose, I think you're doing well w/o more coffee. Those are great ideas. How would the priests feel about having a woman for a Pope? That would make a good plot for a book.