Writers and Their Imaginary Friends by Lisa Mondello

I want to thank Cindy for having me on her blog today. Although I’ve known Cindy a while now, I love meeting new people. So if you don’t know me, give a shout out hello! Today I will be giving away a copy of my book Her Heart for the Asking which is Book 1 in my Texas Hearts series to one commenter. So don’t be shy. Leave a comment for a chance to win!

Writers and Their Imaginary Friends! by Lisa Mondello

Picture this conversation between me and my husband.

“Honey, what’s wrong?”

“Nothing,” I say as I wipe a tear from my eyes. I’m standing at the kitchen sink washing a pan from dinner.

“Then why are you crying?”

“I said it’s nothing.”

“Something is wrong or you wouldn’t be upset. What it is?”

I can’t speak at this point. Washing dishes, or doing no-mind work, always seems to open my creative brain, enabling me to plot out my stories. The attention my husband is giving me, and the concerned look on his face, has made my emotions go into overdrive and I start sobbing. I’m too deep into thinking about my story. But he just doesn’t “get” why I get so emotional when I’m thinking about my stories. And being a guy, he wants to fix things.

“Do you want to talk about it?”

I shake my head.

My husband gives me that “look”. “Should I be worried about these tears or are they for fake people?”

I manage to mumble that I’m okay. I think I even manage the word plotting. By now he knows what that means.

He gives me a kiss. “Okay, let me know if you need me.”

Fake people…or more affectionately known to writers as our imaginary friends…are the characters we live and breathe every day when we write. We hang out with them all day for months on end. I know for myself that I can get so wrapped up in the pain a character feels that I burst into tears when I have to write a particular sad scene, just as I laugh when something goofy happens in a story, or cheer when the hero/heroine bests the villain that has been making their lives miserable.

Now, I know that my imaginary friends aren’t real. But it’s really cool to hang out with them all day. Think of it. When we’re young, we’re taught that imaginary play is good. Then when we get older, we’re grownups and need to act mature. Mature is way overrated when I can have a blast hanging with imaginary friends. My emotions may get the better of me some days, but as a writer, I’ve got the best job in the world.

As a writer, I think it’s important to get wrapped up in the lives of my imaginary friends. If I’m not invested and deeply moved while I’m writing the story, how can the reader be pulled in and care about what happens.

What about you? Are you a writer who gets wrapped up in the lives of your imaginary friends? Are you a reader who worries about your characters until you get to the end of the story, and then secretly wonder how your characters are getting along after the story? (Incidentally, that’s why we write series books. We just can’t let go of our imaginary friends.) Leave a comment and let me know!

Her Heart for the Asking – Book 1 – Texas HeartsMandy Morgan swore she’d never step foot in Texas again after Beau Gentry left her for life on the rodeo circuit eight years before. But now her uncle’s heart is failing and she has to convince him that surgery will save his life. She never dreamed the first thing she’d see when she stepped off the plane would be her biggest nightmare…the one man she’d never stopped loving.

Beau Gentry had the fever for two things: the rodeo and Mandy Morgan. But for Beau, loving Mandy was complicated by his father’s vendetta against her uncle. This led him to make the hardest decision of his life and he can still see the bitterness and hurt on Mandy’s face. All these years it has killed him to think Mandy had forgotten him and moved as far away as possible from him. But now they’re back in Texas, and he’s going to do all he can to win back her love.

Available at:

Barnes and Noble http://ow.ly/8WReM
Lisa Mondello is the best selling author of 13 published books. Her first published book, the award winning ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS YOU, was recently reissued as an ebook and has had over 350,000 downloads worldwide. In addition to publishing her Fate with a Helping Hand series, which includes THE MARRIAGE CONTRACT and THE KNIGHT AND MAGGIE’S BABY, she is releasing her popular Texas Hearts Romance series as ebooks in early 2012, which includes HER HEART FOR THE ASKING, HIS HEART FOR THE TRUSTING and THE MORE I SEE. She currently writes for Harlequin Books and is collaborating with a film producer/screenwriter on a screenplay.She loves to hear from readers. You can email her at LisaMondello@aol.com, find her on her blog talking about writing, movies and music at http://www.lisamondello.blogspot.com or chat on Twitter at @LisaMondello.

18 thoughts on “Writers and Their Imaginary Friends by Lisa Mondello

  1. I had a conversation over lunch yesterday with eigtheen my nephew–it involved the main character in my series. He looked at me like I was nuts when I told him Jake Carrington was a real person to me. That I feel what he feels and like what he likes. I think by the end of lunch he understood, either that or he thought I went over the bend. LOL. Marian

  2. Loved your post. I just came back from visiting a friend who was having problems understanding my imaginary friends. She owns a bistro in Stuttgart, Germany and a well know author frequents it. He was there when we arrived for dinner and she immediately proceeds to tell him about some of the things I’ve said. He looked a little bemused and glanced over at me. I said, she doesn’t understand that we have people in our heads that need to have their stories told. Light dawned in his face and he replied, that’s exactly righ, isn’t it?

  3. *“Should I be worried about these tears or are they for fake people?”* Oh my gosh, I’ve been caught crying like that over characters so many times. That’s awesome that your husband gets it.

  4. How many days have my girls walked in the door from school, found me crying and said, “Dagger?”
    I shake my head, sniffing.
    I nod and keep sniffing. Then one will hug me and go on about making their snack.
    Imaginary friends for a writer become real friends for the reader, so I say imagine away.
    Awesome to have so many books out, Lisa.
    Cora Blu

  5. Lisa- Your emotions flow into the book and as I read your story the tears, joy, and other emotions are strong on my end as well. I always have a box of Kleenex near me when reading. The worst is when their is a villain I think because the anger can get pretty strong too and the characters don’t seem to listen when as the reader I tell them not to trust someone 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your talents with us readers.

  6. Sounds like a great story, Lisa, and I love that cover!

    Speaking about not wanting to let go of imaginary friends, my newest release is a follow up to a book I had published many years ago that went out of print. I loved those characters so much, I projected the story five years into the future and wrote them a whole new romance tale.

    As a writer, I don’t believe your characters ever leave your mind. They stay in your subconscious forever.

  7. LOL. I’ve been known to cry over a character. One time I was in a writing fever and trying to keep up with the scene in my head that I had a delayed emotional shock. “He died! She had to kill him! OMG.” I hadn’t realized I’d been crying.

    Hubby doesn’t get it either, but he likes to hear me talk about my “mind friends”.

  8. Loved the post. I’m with you, maturity is definitely overrated! I had plenty of imaginary friends as a kid and now I have “characters” — never thought about the connection before, maybe because it feels so normal! I get caught up in my characters’ lives and think about them every bit as much (maybe more, since it’s my job) as the living, breathing folks in my life. Thanks for the great blog!

  9. Thank you all for stopping by! I see I’m in quite good company with my imaginary friends.

    Susan thanks for the compliment on the cover. My daughter did all the covers for my Texas Hearts series. She’s Purple Girl Design and she does covers for other authors as well.

  10. What a great topic, Lisa! I absolutely adore my imaginary friends–they all have such interesting lives. 🙂 And MUCH better sex lives LOL. Thanks, Cynthia for having Lisa!

  11. Im both a writer (unpublished) and a reader. My husband thinks its hilarious when I get into a funk over something that happened to one of my characters. He thinks I control the story. I just can’t seem to getting through to him that I’m just telling their stories, not the other way around.

  12. Thanks Lisa for blogging with me and thanks to everyone for all the comments. Lisa DeVries is the winner of the comment contest and a copy of Lisa’s book.

  13. My husband just shakes his head at me when he finds me flinging my hands and pointing. I tend to argue with my characters. I’ve never cried with them though. Yet, I guess I should say.

  14. Lisa–great post! And I know this well. My greatest moments of inspiration are in church where I sit and take notes because I can’t actually talk to my imaginary friends there.
    Your cover is gret and the book sounds terrific!

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