Whenever I finish researching, Lori, I ask myself “What fascinated me most?” Then I look for a word, phrase or factoid that made me think or laugh or wonder. Often that’s my starting point. I discovered doing some research on dating that cattle outnumber women in Wyoming 27:1 and that it was the only cattle state that voted overwhelmingly (72%) for rough sex and rape role-playing. Other the other cattle and dairy states gave a resounding “no!” You can’t go wrong starting from there. In the article you mentioned, I realized creativity is often a way of expressing something that couldn’t be done with typical or “worn-out phrases.” Stevie Nicks came to mind; so did John Phillips. Their lyrics—directed at their spouses or paramours—was all I needed to support my point. Original thoughts stay with us a lot longer than average platitudes. Glad you enjoyed the piece.

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I did a poor imitation of Don Draper for 40 years before writing my first novel. I'm currently in the final stages of a children's book. Lucky me.

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