Sunday 18 August 2013

Blossoming stories - where do ideas come from?

Wendy Storer recently wrote a brilliant post about how she had come across a gift of a story. I had a similar experience yesterday, it wasn't someone telling me something that had happened to them that could be made into an instant story as had happened to Wendy. Instead it was a case of researching something I love and I thought I had researched before. I was wrong,  I found out something totally new and it blew me away immediately

Oh the wonders of the Internet. I suddenly found I had a complete story unfolding in front of me. It is so perfect and it just fell into my lap. How often does that happen to a writer -not very I can assure you. It will be based partly on a true story though there will be an element poetic license. I am not going to tell you what it is yet as it is too new and still forming. But I am very excited about it and so is IC, which is always a bonus.

I am still working on Trafficking with IC but was very aware I needed another story to start working on. I wanted to avoid 'second novel issues.' I also needed something I could play with which is exactly what this story is.

It was the fear behind those ideas that inspired Trafficking
Writers are invariably asked 'Where do your ideas come from?' In a way it is such a difficult question to answer because ideas can come from anywhere. Some of you may remember that the initial idea for Trafficking came from a certain photograph which was very similar to a well known photograph from the National Geographic. But ideas can be formed from anything - song lyrics, poems, news articles, magazine articles. Some writers I know keep files of newspaper/magazine cuttings and use those as sources of inspiration. You can also be inspired by art of various forms, by going to the theatre or watching films or documentaries. It can come from history or a fantastical idea. The Internet can also play a huge part as it allows you to explore the world both past and present. It is always worth keeping a notebook where you can write down splinters of ideas as they come to you.

The most important thing is to remain open to ideas. Let them form and develop of their own accord. I find if you try and force them they stultify and never develop into anything. Also be careful about sharing them too soon. Sometimes people can inadvertently squash your idea because they don't understand what you are trying to do. Treat it as something very precious that needs to be nurtured until it blossoms.

Good luck all your writers with your ideas

And now a bit of Brown Eyed Girl like the girl i

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