Why I wrote "Dragons to Loose"

I always used to try to write stories about strong, independent females who could whup the bad guys all on their own and neither needed nor wanted a guy around for any reason. People who know me personally know that I'm a loner except for a few quite excellent friends who mean the world to me, so I always wanted to write stories about a gal like me, who could do it all by herself.
A problem arose, however. I would get into my story and then it would become so tempting to introduce a love-interest, which would, of course, ruin the story because people who fall in love are weak and dependent, right? This became a major issue for me, or so I thought, so I purposefully sat down to write a quick love-story, just to get it out of my system. I figured, while I'm at it, since I am alone in life, I'll write it exactly how I would want a love story to progress. I would use a heroine that I could totally support, and I'd give her a guy that I thought was wonderful--though neither character would escape without their own quirks and faults. We all have them, after all.
I'd also just experienced the complete and total crash of the harddrive on which I had stored all my writing--a traumatic event to be sure (I now defragment and backup)--so I had a few characters from those lost stories I wanted to ressurect, and I tossed a handful of them in. A problem arose immediately, however. My leading lady and her intended had no chemistry. This necessitated bringing in another fella, and they clicked, and the story started taking off.
I then encountered something I'd never experienced before. I couldn't stop writing. In the past I had always pushed myself to write, but now I was being pulled. The story needed to be written and was demanding I get on the ball about it. I soon realized that I had something on my hands I'd never had before. This writing exercise was compelling me to write, was occupying my thoughts when I should have been paying attention in class, was forcing me to carry a notebook everywhere to jot down new ideas, including as I lay in bed at night, trying to go to sleep (which is the location that I get my best ideas).
I realized I had to make this into more than just a love-story, so I went back and wrote backstory, came up with a timeline, constructed a major plot-arc, and DL was born. I was still under the (silly) expectation that I'd be able to stop after the book was done, but this was not to be. I was informed immediately by my characters that there was more story to tell, and so DF came into being.
As for my belief that people who fall in love are weak and dependent? I ended up with the strongest female character I have ever written by the end of DL. I surprised myself and changed my own belief about love. I should have known better, and I still believe loners can be strong, too, but this book needed to be written, I will never regret writing it, and it taught me a lot.
The sequels to DL are much less romance-driven. I did, it turns out, accomplish what I wanted, initially, with DL. I got the drive to write a love-story out of my system. I still believe stories can include a little romance, and I haven't written romance out completely from the sequels, but now that I've had my one big love, life can move on to other things, and I am still pulled to write, and am still enjoying the continuation of the story I started with DL.
Turns out, I'm glad my harddrive crashed (but I don't want it to happen again).