WHERE do you find your writing ideas?

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JillStar
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WHERE do you find your writing ideas?

Postby JillStar » Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:30 pm

I'm sure we all get our writing ideas from different places, either from personal experience or that of others.

Where have some of your ideas come from?
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Postby Mlou » Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:39 pm

"Out of the nowhere, into the here!"
Sometimes from events in the newspaper; sometimes from things that happen or things I see; sometimes from musings in bed; and sometimes they spring full grown like Minerva from the center of my forehead.
Plus I have 3 large...and I mean large...filing cabinets full of clippings, ideas, my own published stuff, dust balls, mouse droppings, whatever...
nothing is ever simply Yes or No. There's always a But...


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Postby JillStar » Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:46 pm

I think that's a great idea having the clippings... that's something I should do but I don't get the newspaper... and even if I did... it's very limited to what's in it. Still... I should do it.

Here's an idea... What about the Jerry Springer show?
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Postby Mlou » Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:52 pm

Aaaaaaaaghhh!!
nothing is ever simply Yes or No. There's always a But...





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Postby Anblick » Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:56 pm

I get most of mine from my wandering mind. I might overhear a phrase that sparks something akin to the "Word Association" thread in my mind and then I think of something that I think is cool and I add it to my list of ideas.

When I have a story to write, I look over my list of ideas (many pages) and see which ones I can use.

I also have a very vivid imagination, so when presented with a basic concept or problem as to how to piece two things together, I can usually have a decent plan in a matter of hours.
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Postby charlesp » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:00 pm

hmmm let's see... I'll run through a couple of my stories and see..

The Colony - it was a congolmeration of a couple of articles on genetics, a biography of Frank Herbert, and just some random thoughts extrapolated from there.

Post Partum - This one was simple... all those comments about "he has such old eyes" when the new baby came.

The unfinished Piratical Novel - I got interested in cryptography and had been reading a couple of HUGE books about it when I got struck with the notion of a cryptographic pirate. When doing pirate research I came across the story about Anne Bonne and how she and her co-female pirate "pled their belly"s because they were pregnant and got out of being hung... and wondered what happened to the baby who lived (Anne Bonne wasn't seen again after she was released really).
I'd also been reading a lot of Carl Hiassen at the time and his wacky FL adventure stories piqued my interest... So I put them together and got started on a story about the family decended from that child. I started that a little more than a year ago and stalled out around 15000 words.... which I fully intend to get back to at some point (so be warned writer's group #2).

Baked Beans & Pickles - was a short story which I took a couple of the stories from my dad's childhood and fictionalized them together into one short tale....

Guess that's a good rundown of my more... developed ideas.

CharlesP

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C Clarke
"Coffee is sufficiently advanced technology" - Merlin Mann
One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee." - Wally (Dilbert)
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Postby charlesp » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:03 pm

I guess I do pull from news stories and the other thing I like to do is flip through photography magazines (one of my other artistic dreams laid by the wayside) and make up stories from the images....

And freaky news stories like
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/somerset/3534361.stm too

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C Clarke
"Coffee is sufficiently advanced technology" - Merlin Mann
One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee." - Wally (Dilbert)
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Postby Hyker » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:03 pm

I've sometimes woken up from a dream that really inspires a story. There have been times when I wake up thinking, "That would make an AWSOME story" then i go back to sleep and can't remember the dream. ARGHHHHH! I know someone is going to tell me to keep a journal by the bedside, but I'd have to have the motivation to turn on a light and write it down.

Most of my humor pieces have their foundation with my childhood.

I really should keep a journal somewhere because I know I lose tons of ideas after putting them aside in my mind for "later".
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Postby charlesp » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:13 pm

Hyker, you need to take Anne Lammott's advice... Notecards... always keep a 3x5 notecard folded in half in your pocket so you can write down those random thoughts and ideas for later. She says she's got a ton of them floating around her desk with random incidents written on them to use in stories later.

CharlesP

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C Clarke
"Coffee is sufficiently advanced technology" - Merlin Mann
One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee." - Wally (Dilbert)
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Postby romancewriter » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:13 pm

I usually get mine from TV, a song, or people watching. I also play a game of What if..........
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Postby charlesp » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:14 pm

I haven't gotten any ideas from people watching that I've used... but I have a habit of peaking into passing cars at people just to see what they're doing and try and figure out their lives from a 1 second glimpse.

CharlesP

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C Clarke
"Coffee is sufficiently advanced technology" - Merlin Mann
One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee." - Wally (Dilbert)
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Postby romancewriter » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:22 pm

I look and try to imagine what they are saying or if they bump into each what they may say will it be love/hate/lust at first sight
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Postby Hyker » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:23 pm

charlesp wrote:Hyker, you need to take Anne Lammott's advice... Notecards... always keep a 3x5 notecard folded in half in your pocket so you can write down those random thoughts and ideas for later. She says she's got a ton of them floating around her desk with random incidents written on them to use in stories later.

CharlesP


Great idea. I actually bought a small recorder to carry for a while, but usually ended up singing into it when I was driving. I didn't want the incriminating evidence around anymore, so the recorder was stuck in a drawer somewhere around here...hmmmm...I'd better find that. I'd hate for it to make its grand reappearance during a special event with lots of people around. (my friends and family would LOVE that though)
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Postby Power of Cheese » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:26 pm

Hmm, not as much as you might think Hyker...
Might I suggest a small spiral note book, the kind that fits in your pocket or, for a high tech solution, a PDA.
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Postby Mlou » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:28 pm

Charles, I too look a photos in mags and paintings. I write a lot of short poetry based on pictures.
And sometime I do put character traits in, that I've seen or know about...like one person I know who ALWAYS checks every coin return slot she passes.
When I asked why she did this, she replied that she gives everything she picks up that way to some charity. (I hope the charity isn't subsisting just on what she finds that way!)
nothing is ever simply Yes or No. There's always a But...





GINGERBREAD MAN by Mary Lou Healy at Amazon.com http://www.publishamerica.com/shopping/ ... ogid=16658 at Publish America
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Postby Hyker » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:29 pm

Power of Cheese wrote:Hmm, not as much as you might think Hyker...
Might I suggest a small spiral note book, the kind that fits in your pocket or, for a high tech solution, a PDA.


HEY! A PDA! That's a great idea! :D And its another gadget for me. Best Buy here I come! Thanks Cheese
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Postby Power of Cheese » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:33 pm

No Prob, just don't tell Pooh who it was that gave you the idea.
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"It's hard to dance when the floor keeps moving"...
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Postby Hyker » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:33 pm

LOL
"When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and I could say, 'I used everything you gave me.'"

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Postby JillStar » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:38 pm

I think it could actually depend upon the type of story you want to write. Something with nature might cause an author to go out in the moutains for a while. Perhaps something about the murderous mind... have an argument with your significant other. :)
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Postby Power of Cheese » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:52 pm

I think it was Lex Luther that said some people can be inspired by a popsicle wrapper and write the complete works of Shakespeare and other could read "War and Peace" and come away with nothing. It's all personal. I know my muse usually pops her (his?) head when I'm supposed to be paying attention at a meeting...and it usually starts with "wouldn't it be cool if..."
"Space is deep, man is small, and time is his relentless enemy" L. Ron Hubbard

http://www.ilovecheese.com/

"It's hard to dance when the floor keeps moving"...
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Postby TinaS1570 » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:53 pm

I get mine from the various ways people have mentioned. I carry a notebook with me all the time. I've learned the hard way, when I get an idea, quick jot it down. Sometimes, because of things that have happened to me or friends, I'll get and idea and just write and write, till my hand hurts. This includes while driving. Every stop sign, traffic light, I'm scribbling furiously. I know, get a recorder...but i hate the way my voice sounds on tape. There was one time, i got an idea for a story and I had to get my son and bring him to a class. I wrote at all the signals, he told me when the light changed and while we walked to his class. My mother came that evening to watch him practice and I kept writing even though she kept talking to me. She kept telling me to "put the pen down and listen to her" even though I explained I've been hit with inspiration, talk later. She never did understand, which is why it's taken me till I'm nearly 34 to pursue my writing more seriously.

Songs also give me ideas. Certain songs trigger memories for me. I usually flashback to a simpler time or some event.

I've been working on and off on a story about touring with the Grateful Dead, since I was one of those "weird people" that would follow them around from venue to venue for quite a while. During that time, I met a bunch of people who are definitely an interesting bunch. One day I'll finish it. ;)
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Postby Power of Cheese » Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:57 pm

I can tell by your avatar Silent Bob. BTW, I LOVED the Jay and Silent Bob cartoons. It was a pity it went off the air.
"Space is deep, man is small, and time is his relentless enemy" L. Ron Hubbard

http://www.ilovecheese.com/

"It's hard to dance when the floor keeps moving"...
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Postby Jayne » Fri Mar 05, 2004 7:19 pm

(Dare is say this?) My inspiration for "Josh" was a carcas on the side of the road! Songs will inspire me......little catch phrases in them.....a piece of garbage inspires me...a crappy mood inspires me...watching people inspires me...my lunatic sheltie inspires me....dreams inspire me....just about anything inspires me. The problem is getting myself to actually sit down and write! No discipline.
Jayne, your mouth is talking. You might want to see to that.
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Postby charlesp » Fri Mar 05, 2004 7:36 pm

hey now... watch your language jayne... that D word has no place around here :D

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C Clarke
"Coffee is sufficiently advanced technology" - Merlin Mann
One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee." - Wally (Dilbert)
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Postby Anblick » Fri Mar 05, 2004 7:37 pm

Dreams?

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