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Creating Captured Lies and Bailey’s Journey

Maggie Thom, Multi-Award Winning Author, Speaker, Writing Coach

The great thing about writing is that you can let your imagination go anywhere you want it to. You can use it to create situations, people, whole worlds, whatever you need to, to craft your story. With writing anything is possible. And almost anything goes.

Captured Lies was interesting to write because a lot was going on in my life at the time – I was working full time, I was taking a graduate level Coaching course, my dad died, we moved my mother-in-law who had been living with us for ten years into a lodge – whereby she passed away a few months later, my mom had a heart attack and I quit my job. A little bit of a wild ride, so for me, writing it was cathartic and a form of escape.

 

When I was coming up with Bailey and all of her troubles, a lot of things came together to create it. It started innocently enough, a plane flew overhead and I wondered what if it crashed. Then I was on a plane twice within three months. Very unusual for me. I am not scared of flying, in fact I love it, but there were a few people on my flights who were obviously not happy about being there. So of course the plane crashing came to mind, a few times. I wondered if anyone would survive. Could they? I wasn’t sure. I guess it all depended on several circumstances. So I decided to create my own plane crash but have someone survive.

Around this time, I had gone to the local store, where they have posters up from anything for sale to missing pets but they also have a wall with several pictures of kids who have gone missing. Some have been suspected of being kidnapped by a family member and living under an assumed name. So I started to wonder what kind of lives those kids would have. Was it good? What would they do if when they were adults they discovered or remembered things about their childhood?

Can she untangle 30 years of secrets, lies and deceit?

She was kidnapped not once but twice…

and now someone wants her dead because of it…

Her life was a lie!

Bailey knew her upbringing hadn’t been normal but she’s worked hard to stabilize her life. She finally has a good business, a stable home; her life is miles from that of her childhood. Then her mom suddenly dies, leaving a gaping hole and a discovery  that they may not even be related. If Guy, the private investigator is to be believed, her life was a lie. Growing up on the run has prepared Bailey for once again, fleeing to stay alive. Using the skills she learned on the street, Bailey travels back through a sketchy and dangerous past, to find answers. Dodging bullets, staying ahead of those who want her dead and convincing Guy she can do it alone, are making it difficult to uncover not only the secrets of her mother’s past but that of a family claiming she is theirs.

Everyone seems to have a story… but who’s telling the truth? And who wants her dead? To discover the truth, she’ll have to untangle a web of deceit, lies, and secrets dating back over thirty years.

So the two ideas came together and I was able to create a compelling story, Captured Lies.

To make this believable, Bailey couldn’t have any memory of a childhood. So I made her a baby when the kidnapping took place. I wanted her to have a really tangled web to unravel. Then I started to wonder what would make it really difficult? And why would she have been kidnapped not once but twice? The elements kept building until I had an intriguing and compelling story.

Bailey’s character isn’t based on any one person. When I build a character I will often take little bits of different people I know, have seen or heard about. So they are kind of an amalgamation of several people—their looks, their quirks, their habits. It’s kind of cool to create new people.

 

“Captured Lies was quite a journey to write but one that I am so glad that I took. It has been worth it.”

Bailey is a strong, female character (okay let’s be real, all women are strong) who goes through normal life stuff. Her story, her journey is not one you’d wish on anyone but I am sure that some people have lived this kind of life. Kind of scary to think that.

What do you think? Is Bailey’s life something you could see someone actually living?

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