20 thoughts on “Reader Friday: Ideas

  1. For some reason, ideas come to me in the shower. I’m always yelling out something like, “Honey, write this down. An overworked desk clerk for the Grim Reaper gets tired of the small town life.”


    “Please. I’ve got soap in my eyes and don’t want to ruin another notepad.”

  2. I read and write historical fiction. I get ideas from vintage advertising, old movies, a phrase in a book … elements from the period I write in.

  3. I’m with Ray. Every damn morning at 3:00 a.m. Worst part is: my husband’s a night person. He goes to bed at 1:00 and is just hitting REM when my eyes are popping open. We seem to just miss each other all the time. It’s now 5:30 a.m., and I’m taking my first break to read your blog.

  4. Research. Almost everything from conducting research on a topic, which causes me to have one of those “I wonder what would happen if….” or “wouldn’t that be fun if there was a story about….”

    Also, reading articles that trigger a hot button in me.

  5. I visit my childhood: boogeymen under the bed, vampires in the closet, evil spirits disguised as suburban housewives . . . you know, normal kid stuff!

  6. From news article (what if instead of finding the …?), dreams, songs, in the shower, overheard conversations, things I see, something that pops into my head while I’m flat-out busy with something else (angel whispers?). Okay, I confess I get ideas from everything around me. How many do I have time to stop and jot down? Maybe a hundredth of them.

  7. When it comes to getting story ideas, I have experienced all of the above. But what about chapter title ideas? Do they need consistency? Do they need an arc? Is there an art to it? Anybody have ideas or opinions about that?

  8. My ideas usually come from something I read, but I also spend a lot of time in the car, and I keep my voice recorded handy in case a flash of inspiration hits me.

    Usually, once I get started with an idea, it quickly morphs into something else, and I ramble into my voice recorder, working out the details until I can’t ramble any more.

  9. I get ideas from reading or watching something and wondering if the facts were changed from ABC to ABD what would happen. I ask myself some legal question which gets me researching the answer – then I wonder how someone would get into such a mess – that’s where the story comes into focus.

  10. I got one idea from a play buzz quiz result, one from a dissatisfying ending of a novel I read, one from a broadway song… and quite a few from dreams.

  11. I seem to be visited by the Muse when I’m “not paying attention” ~ I’ll be doing something else~ driving, washing dishes, vegging in front of the idiot-box, reading a book or magazine (or blog~ especially this one 🙂 ) ~ i.e. not focused on “being creative” ~ and something will poke me with, “Hmmm… Did you hear/see that? What if ‘that’…?” and then I’m pulled out of the veg and find myself turning things over and over and jotting notes…

  12. I carry a notepad and pen everywhere. Many ideas come to me when I’m walking or making myself write something in my journal. Solitude, away from noise, works for me. I let my mind wander….

  13. I am never short of ideas, for that matter between the Leprechauns and my Muses (click here for a description of the Muses) the ideas come in a stream I cannot even turn off. I do end up staying up late trying to sift through the ideas and pluck out the good ones.
    Sometimes, I actually wish it would stop, so I could get a good night’s sleep without trying to figure out how to blow up a bridge or what Chinese Special Forces eat in the field or if troll farts or lethal.

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