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Monday, March 25, 2013

Face To Face With A Legend
Behind The Creation of J.M. Bailey’s "Eve"

TCC Team Member Dorraine Fisher

By TCC Team Member Dorraine Fisher
Professional Writer, a nature and wildlife enthusiast who has written for many magazines.

Have you ever wondered what’s behind the creation of a good story? Where it came from and what it took to breathe life into it? I’ve seen quite a few stories about bigfoot or bigfoot-type creatures, and I was disappointed nearly every time. They were mostly just horror stories about a creature on a killing spree. A monster of folklore. Not the sasquatch we’ve come to understand and love through research and observance.

So when I read "Eve" by J.M. Bailey I was awestruck. Finally a story that presented a little magic and wonder to the idea of our hairy friends. No evil monsters here. Just something closer to what we all believe them to be: peaceful, tolerant, and possibly possessing a sense of "humanity." In this story, set in the wilderness of northern California, the main character, Anna, finds herself stranded in a remote area of the mountains. And as she struggles with her survival situation of washed out roads from torrential rains, she comes up against a legend she’d always imagined, but never dared to think she would ever see.

So I had to ask J.M. Bailey herself what inspired the idea for the story.
"The idea for the story literally hit me like a freight train, she told me. "It was Autumn, 2011 and I was up in the Sierra-Nevada Mountains "exploring" -
I'd found a really great area off Hwy 50, south of Lake Tahoe. I was on a trail and had stopped to take some pictures. The scenery is spectacular in that area! Suddenly, I heard what sounded like bipedal
footsteps coming down the slope to my right. I froze, hitting the record button on my camera but didn't hear anything more. Needless to say, I was quite unnerved but stayed out on the trail for about an hour more. I had the feeling I was being watched.

"So what happened that made you decide to turn it into a fiction story?" I asked.
"When I got back to my hotel room that evening, I cracked open a bottle of wine. As I sipped, a strange thought hit my head...what if I had gotten stranded on that trail somehow!? That was all it took and the rest of the evening (and the rest of the bottle of wine) was spent
pacing back and forth in the room as the story of Anna's adventure unfolded. It literally consumed me for 24 hours. Even while I slept, my dreams seemed half conscious and the story continued through the night - intense and emotional. I woke the next morning, groggy from lack of sleep (okay, too much wine) and the story picked right back up. I remember laughing and crying at it within the same time frame of about an hour and I could think of nothing else until the journey of the two main characters had finished in my brain. 

I was dazed for the next few days. The story was so intense and overwhelming, I found myself faced with a decision: spin a good yarn to someone who would listen, OR write it down. I had never
written a flowing story from beginning to end. But that's exactly what happened! I went to the store and got a spiral bound notebook."
Why did you feel the need to write it down with all the writing programs out there to help you?" I asked.

"I did this because I didn't want the luxury of a word program sitting in front of me where I could instantly change things up. I wanted to write with my hands. It seemed very important to me to attempt a capture of the raw, visceral feelings I experienced in that 24 hours."

"So how long did all this take?"
"It took about five months from the day the storyline developed to the day the manuscript was typed up. I had already read most of it to my husband who was instantly enthralled. So, I started letting a select few others read it. The response was overwhelmingly positive so I moved
forward with self publishing."

J.M. is currently writing the sequel, Iron Mountain Ridge, which will take Anna back to the mountains. This time with her husband in tow. They encounter all kinds of situations that eventually to lead another life-changing event with the creatures. 

"The ending on this one is crazy!" she told me. "Readers (if I can pull this off...) will demand a third book! I hope by that time Eve will have been successfully optioned to a production company."

"Yes, I heard you have some exciting things going on."

"Just recently, I had the extraordinary opportunity to join with Cask Studios" J.M. explained. They’re in the process to adapt Eve for the screen! It's very exciting!"

So it looks like this is just the beginning for the adventures of Anna and Eve. There will be many more exciting moments to come.

"The final product is really a labor of love," J.M. concluded. I get a lot of feedback from readers who want to be Anna, experience what she does and they’re demanding more. That gives me a great deal of satisfaction. It's a great story and I am extremely proud and pleased to share it with the world!" ********DF

[Editors Note: Dorraine also did a review of "Eve", you can read it by Clicking Here ]


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