Friday, September 28, 2012
WHERE DO YOUR IDEAS COME FROM?
How many times have you heard this question? I think every time somebody hears the words "writer" or "author", it seems to be the first question that springs to peoples minds.
Most of us have vivid imaginations. Try thinking back to when you were a chid. As children we made up games to play with our friends. We'd go outside into the yard or onto the front porch and spend countless hours living and playing in our imaginary world. There were no limits and no boundaries to confine us. We sang songs to music only we could hear the words and melody to. We'd dance and twirl with abandon, seeing the movements and hearing the rhythms in our minds and our hearts. We even made up tall tales to tell all our friends about how we spent our summer vacation.
Stepping forward from the imaginings of childhood, our minds still form and shape the images and pictures of everyday life into cohesive (at least we hope) storytelling. We watch, we absorb, and we contemplate. We listen, we sniff, we taste. The people and places around us are an endless source of inspiration.
The lady in line at the grocery store in front of you, a toddler seated in her cart. Her phone rings and even before she answers, her expression fills with so much hope it nearly breaks your heart. Is it her husband or lover on the phone? Is it a call from the doctor's office calling to tell her the biopsy was benign? Maybe it's the employment office telling her she got the job she's been desperately seeking for months. The wheels in your mind can spin the tale in any direction you want, just from watching thirty seconds in the life of a stranger.
Maybe you're in your favorite coffee shop and you see a man and a woman seated across from each other. There are talking softly, the conversation animated with gestures on his part yet the more he talks, the further his companion seems to shrink back into her seat. What's their story?
Maybe you're watching television and the news comes on. There's a story about a major pharmaceutical company's new breakthrough weight loss miracle drug the FDA just approved. As the reporter drones on about all the wonderful attributes of this medication, they show pictures of overweight people. If you're a suspense writer (like me LOL) imagine where this story could go. What if the drug did help people lose weight but a side effect caused homicidal tendencies with people going on killing sprees. Where could this story take you?
Stories and ideas are everywhere around you if you just look for them. Let your inner child come out and play, free your imagination to frolic and dance and sing and you'll see where all my ideas come from.