Images by K D Grace

by | January 30, 2013 | General | 2 comments

I’m always a bit behind in the technology curve and
even more so in the social media curve. I’m a toe-dipper in the techno-pool of
social and promotional possibilities always testing the water to make sure it’s
not too cold and not too deep. I like to make sure it’s navigable with my
marginal skills before I hop on in. That’s a very long-winded way of saying
that I finally discovered Pinterest over
the Christmas holidays, and I am SO addicted!

The thing is I never thought I would be. I mean my
job is to create pictures with words, right? It all happens inside my head,
right? That’s what having a great imagination is all about, right? And yet, I’m
like a kid in a candy store when it comes to the images on Pinterest. At first,
I found that fact a little bit disturbing, a little bit like watching too much
reality TV. Looking at lovely, brightly-coloured, preeeetty pictures for hours
is – you know – a guilty secret that I really wasn’t sure I wanted to admit in

Oh, it all started innocently enough. It was just
one more way to promote my novels. I put the cover images of my novels up on
individual boards and added other related images that were relevant to the
stories or the characters, and it was cool. But then I started a ‘fun stuff’
board, and a ‘sexy stuff’ board, and a board for myths and inspiration, and a
board for my favourite places and favourite books, and a board for walking, and
a board for garden porn…! You get the picture … er the image.

It’s no secret that I’m pretty neurotic. I’m forever
navel-gazing and trying to analyse just what it is that makes me do some of the
strange things I do — like hurrying to finish my work so I can reward myself
by looking at pretty pictures. That being the case, take my analysis for what
it’s worth – an effort for me to convince everyone, but mostly myself, that
looking at pretty pictures is a good thing, and that I really am okay. Honest!

The powerful parts of story, the parts that I
remember most vividly are the parts in which the image is so clear in my mind that
if I saw it on Pinterest, if I saw it in a glossy magazine, or if it were
shared on Facebook or on telly, I’d recognise it in a heartbeat because I’d see
it with way more than just my eyes. An
image is a representation of the external form of a person or thing in
sculpture, painting, etc
. An image is the reflection in the mirror, the
imitation of a thing. And the imagination
is the place where those wonderful word
images are created.

At the end of the navel-gaze, my fascination with
Pinterest and pretty pictures isn’t really all that hard to understand. I see
stories in pictures. By that, I mean what I read or what I write, I see
visually in my head. Though I don’t see the characters in my stories as looking
like actors or famous people, I see images that reflect their personalities,
their actions and reactions to the plot unfolding around them, to the world
they live in, to their response and reaction to each other. Words are the
building blocks for images in story, for pretty pictures and scary pictures and
sad pictures and happy pictures. Words are the finesse for images. Words take
images to the next level by twisting and sculpting and recreating, by breathing
life into those images and bringing them screaming and kicking from the world
of the imagination out onto the written page. There’s a reason why the book is
always better than the film. There’s a reason why the best images only exist
inside my head — as well as the most moving images and the most terrifying

Two years ago in August, my husband and I walked the
Wainwright Coast to Coast path across England. We made the trip with two
cameras and two BlackBerrys. Some days we took hundreds of images. Other days
we took only a few because it was pouring rain and we just wanted to get
somewhere warm and dry. I blogged that fourteen-day journey across Cumbria and
North Yorkshire, from St. Bee’s Head to Robin Hood’s Bay, so I wanted as many
images as we could get for my posts. Even now, two years later, I can look at
those images, and I’m there! I’m there in the Lake District, on the top of
Kidsty Pike in the wind and the mist, I’m there walking through the old mining
ruins on the high level route between Keld and Reeth, I’m there on the North
York Moors looking out over a sea of blooming heather.

Those photos along with thousands of images from
hundreds of walks in the Lake District were revisited, studied and reimagined
in my mind as I wrote the Lakeland Heatwave
Now, so many of those images have stories beyond the stories, so
many of those images take me places I could never go in the real world, but
only in the world of my characters and their stories. Every image has a thousand
stories, stories that I haven’t written yet, stories that I haven’t even
imagined yet, stories that I won’t live long enough to write. So it’s not really
surprising that my imagination is so easily captured by pretty pictures.

The power of image in a story is the power to take
me there and make me want to stay for the whole thing, and not want to leave
when it’s over. The power of image in a story is the power to take me there, then
to make me wish I could leave, the
power that won’t allow me to leave, even after the story’s over. That’s a lot
of power.

I know a lot of writers use an image board, of some
sort, to help them clarify in their heads elements of their story and their
characters. I’ve never done that. The Pinterest boards of my work are all after
the fact. But then perhaps I do something similar in my mind that I’d not
really thought about until my Pinterest addiction reared its pretty head.
Perhaps every story I write is a board of images, images brought more and more
sharply into focus, as I write and rewrite, until they do what I need them to
do, until they make the reader look hard and feel deeply. Well, that’s what I’d
like to think, anyway. Maybe it’s more of a goal really, to make what I write
clear and sharply focused and impossible for my readers to look away from
without being moved in some way without being changed in some way. 

Find me on Pinterest here:

KD Grace

Voted ETO Best Erotic Author of 2014, K D Grace believes Freud was right. It really IS all about sex — sex and love – and that is an absolute writer’s playground.

When she’s not writing, K D is veg gardening or walking. Her creativity is directly proportional to how quickly she wears out a pair of walking boots. She loves mythology, which inspires many of her stories. She enjoys time in the gym, where she’s having a mad affair with a pair of kettle bells. She loves reading and watching birds, and she loves anything that gets her outdoors.

KD’s novels and other works are published by Totally Bound, SourceBooks, Accent Press, Harper Collins Mischief Books, Mammoth, Cleis Press, Black Lace, and others. She also writes romance under the name Grace Marshall.

K D’s critically acclaimed erotic romance novels include, The Initiation of Ms Holly, Fulfilling the Contract, To Rome with Lust, and The Pet Shop. Her paranormal erotic novel, Body Temperature and Rising, the first book of her Lakeland Witches trilogy, was listed as honorable mention on Violet Blue’s Top 12 Sex Books for 2011. Books two and three, Riding the Ether, and Elemental Fire, are now also available.

K D Grace also writes hot romance as Grace Marshall. An Executive Decision, Identity Crisis, The Exhibition and Interviewing Wade are all available.


  1. Lisabet Sarai

    That's some pretty intricate navel-gazing, K.D.!

    I know what you mean, though, about a picture telling a story. I was just browsing through 123rf, looking for some cover images. Some of the pictures seem empty, flat. They're obviously posed and have no depth, no heart. And others… well, I could sit down and write 3K words then and there, just from that one glimpse. It's not completely correlated with the artistic quality of the photo either. It's something else – some embedded meaning. Was that meaning there when the photo was shot? That's an interesting question!

    Watch out with Pinterest, though. I've heard of people who have been legally harassed for using images to which they don't own the copyright.

  2. KD Grace

    Thanks for the comment, Lisabet. I try to keep the navel-gazing to a minimum, but sometimes I just can't help myself.

    It is fascinating what images grab our attention and hold it and what ones we just skim over and barely see. I suppose it all has to do with other memories, other experiences that they spark off of. Whatever it is, I'm hooked.

    Will be careful with Pinterest. Thanks!


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