Monday, February 15, 2021

Ripped From the Pages... #MuseMonday #inspiration #wrpbks


When I don't have a guest on Muse Monday, I'll share excerpts with photos that inspired scenes from my books. The scenes are most likely never before shared excerpts. 

This scene inspired one of the other books in the series, The Power of Love and Murder. Penny gets the starring roll in book four after her audition in the first book of the series, The Art of Love and Murder.

Ripped from the pages... of The Art of Love and Murder

“Hello, Ms. Dahl. Were the tacos at the Kachina as good as I promised?”

Lobby of the haunted hotel and inspiration
for the Grand View Hotel in the book.

The young hotel clerk greeted Lacy as she strolled through the nearly century old lobby on her way to the stairs and her room. The young woman’s petite stature and perky, twenty-something personality seemed in direct contrast to the black spiked hair, piercings and black rimmed eyes. Lacy had dubbed her the Black Fairy when she’d checked in two hours ago.

“Every bit, Penny. And the margarita was strong.” She wondered if the young woman always dressed Goth or if she embraced the spirit of the Grand View Hotel’s reputation. The night shift and the Agatha Christie setting suited her look. “I think I’m tired. I better get to bed.”

Penny smiled an impish, close-mouthed grin. “Got big plans for tomorrow?” She crossed her arms on the white marble counter. Black, elbow-length gloves with the fingers missing displayed delicate fingers ending in black nail polish.

“I’m getting out tomorrow for some research I’m doing, art gallery and maybe a museum.” Lacy breathed in the musky scent of the ages-old lobby. Or maybe the Black Fairy’s perfume? “

Standing in the stairwell of the real hotel 
and inspiration for the book.
Are you writing a book or something on Flagstaff?” “No, I’m trying to find the artist of some sketches left to me.” She yawned. “And I better get to bed so I’ve got the energy for the long day tomorrow.” She hiked her purse strap higher on her shoulder. “Is there a park nearby or somewhere I could do a little running in the morning?”

“A small park. One block north and a couple of blocks west. But it’s pretty small.” “I’ll have to make do. Goodnight, Penny.”

“Goodnight, Ms. Dahl.”

The short flight of stairs challenged her as she trudged, tiredly pulling each foot up to the next step. The
floral carpeting, narrow hallway and gold patterned wallpaper transported her back in time. The renowned hotel, beautifully restored, reflected the era of the 1920’s. The antiquated wall lamps dimly lit the hall, casting warm shadows of the past. She walked where many famous people had traipsed in the last century.

One of the many famous who
have stayed in the hotel.

Halfway down the hall, she stopped at her door and fished out her old-fashioned brass key from the pocket of her jeans. Had her mother and father walked this hall, slept in one of these rooms, maybe made love? Drowsily, she mused as the heavy key clicked in the lock. Had she been conceived here, only to be left orphaned months after her birth, before Kaya Mockta and Hartmut Luschin could be married?

FYI - All the Love and Murder Series books are on sale until 2/19/2021.


  1. Great idea for a post. Did you see any ghosts at the hotel?

    1. I did, Diane. I saw two orbs as I lay in bed. Fun!

  2. Great scene...I love that it was inspired by the hotel you stayed in. Awesome!

    1. Using our experiences and locals makes writing scenes more real. Thanks, Alicia.

  3. I love the stories behind the stories. Fabulous post Brenda!