There are often times where I’ve sat down in a movie theater to watch a movie adaptation of a previously published novel and thought to myself, “I wonder what it feels like as an author to watch your creation come to life on a big screen?” Perhaps, one day, God willing, I’ll get to find out for myself. But, until then, I will continue to live vicariously through the accomplishment of others.
The most recent example is the home video release of “Warm Bodies” by author Isaac Marion. He, like Stephanie Meyer, took an old concept, like zombies, and put his own twist on it to create a fresh and romantic story that has so many teenage girls dreaming of bringing a hot zombie back to life. It’s a far-fetched idea that initially sounds completely ludicrous, but in the end it works. Why? Because Marion masterfully used loneliness and love to make you feel something for the “corpse” and gave you insight into the zombie’s yearning to live. The love of an open-minded young girl gives “R” a reason to breathe again, and together they change the world. For me personally, it was once again proof that the best movies come from great books.
I bet if you think long and hard enough, you can come up with some movies that you loved which started out as nothing more than a novel on a local bookshelf. “Harry Potter”, “Twilight”, “Life of Pi”, “The Notebook”, “The Help” and “The Hunger Games” are just some of the books that made their way to the big screen in a big way. I doubt that any of these authors had dreams of selling their story to a movie studio when they sat down to write, but millions of us are happy they did.
I was recently given one of the best compliments I’ve been given about my debut novel, “Haunting”. A fan told me that if my book was a movie, she’d ‘totally watch it’. This brought a smile to my face because it meant that the reader was able to visualize my characters and their setting and connected with the story. One reader even told me exactly how she wants my trilogy to end. People have become so invested in the lives of Dusty and Jack, devising ways the fictional couple can physically end up together, that they are coming up with imaginative ways of completing the story in their own minds. What does this mean to an author? Everything! It means I have successfully created characters that people have been able to identify with and care about. It’s the one thing every author hopes to accomplish with each book they write.
So, in the end it comes down to this…if I were given the opportunity to see “Haunting” on the big screen, would I do it? Absolutely. But, if it never happens, that’s okay, too. There are people out there reading my book and waiting, ever so impatiently, for the sequel who give me the drive to continue to follow my dream.
But, in the off-chance that a big Hollywood producer is reading this right now…have your people call my people.