Right now, I'm preparing to wrap myself into my latest book, TAG. It's a Suspenseful Thriller about a pair of serial killers who suddenly clash when one killer wants out of the game and his partner decides to keep him in by force.
In order to keep my mind fresh and entwined with the characters, I had to research serial killers. I've used one killer in specific to focus my psyche on, Ted Bundy. I keep a printed copy of his bio with his photo on it pinned to a cork board I have hanging in front on my laptop. Hanging next to that there is an image of a man in a snowy wooded setting. Another image of an old beaten shack in the woods in the winter also hangs on my board.
The idea is to get all kinds of photos and facts and surround myself with them while I'm writing the story. This way it gets difficult to become distracted or lose focus. I try to keep my mind sharp with the facts that I print out and hang up. I sometimes draw pictures of the way I see the characters in my mind and write brief facts about them underneath to keep me on track.
I also listen to music that strikes the mood of whatever I'm writing. If I'm working on a scary action scene, I might put in a fast paced metal CD, something to get my blood pumping. An angry song or collection of them. Thank goodness for ITunes. They make this task much easier. LOL!
If I'm writing a sexy love scene, I might listen to Paula Cole or George Michaels. Something like that.
I do my best to engulf myself in the story. And every story I write becomes more and more involved. The next one must always be better than the last one.