How does a simple idea evolve into a book?

I’ve had the question posed to me about how I came up with the idea for my newest teen fantasy, Forbidden.  Honestly, I was sick and tired of reading the typical cliché vampire novel.  Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed Twilight and many of the other vampire books on the book shelves today…but I needed a break.  I read my way through Werewolves, Dragons and angles before I finally decided I wanted to step out of the norm.
The idea of Immortality has always been somewhat of a fascination of mine.  To live forever.  What on earth would you do with yourself?  Surely after a couple hundred years you would have seen and done everything there was to do.  Then what?
So I wanted to take a popular theme and give it a major twist.  I told my husband a couple months ago while we were on a drive that I wanted to do a book on Immortals.  I had no clue where I wanted to go with it but it was an idea that I couldn’t drop.
I knew that I wanted it set it Romania.  I loved the picturesque country side, the quaint buildings and wealth of history.  And since I wanted my Immortal to be rather old I needed her to live in a castle.  I flipped through page after page of stunning castles and stumbled upon one that just felt right.  At the bottom of the picture it had a caption.  Castle Bran.  Dracula’s castle.
Now that’s where the wheels in my head really started grinding.  The legend of Dracula had always fascinated me.  Sorry Twilight fans, but I grew up with vampires that didn’t glitter or choose a mountain lion as a main course.  So I wanted to explore the idea of the sadistic version of vampires that people used to be accustomed to.  But there came in the kicker.  I DIDN”T want to write a vampire novel.
So low and behold the twist came into play.  Immortals that needed human blood to heal when wounded and became addicted to blood like a human on pain killers.  I delved into the idea of changed behaviors, personality shifts that led to the degradation of one Vladimir Enescue, Roseline’s husband and legendary Dracula.  In my book, Forbidden, my characters live the lives that lead to the creation of the Vampire myth. 
Now of course I didn’t want my heroin to be evil.  Far from it.  I wanted to show that even surrounded but such vile filth a person could retain their innocence.  And from there Roseline was born. 
In order for Roseline to endure three centuries of torture at the hands of her husband, Roseline needed to have someone to keep her sane.  To help her heal and teach her how to live a life without debauchery and murder.  She clung to him for her sanity and as such developed deep feelings for him.
But when she sees her chance to escape her tyrannical husband, Roseline leaves everything behind, including her only friend.  She starts over as a high school student in Chicago Illinois with the hopes of being able to live the life that’d been taken from her.  But fate wouldn’t allow her to remain in the shadows.
And I will leave you there.  It’s no fun to spoil the story!
If you would like to read my newly released Teen Fantasy novel, Forbidden, please check out my eBooks. 
So how do you come up with your ideas?  How do they evolve for you?  What tips can you share to help other authors get from an idea to a finished novel?

Happy Reading!

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