I was going to talk more about what makes my favorites…you know, my favorites, but as it happens, I’m flying to the U.S. in two days with my whole family for a five week visit, so right now my mind is jumping from one thing to the next like a jackrabbit on crack. Pensive and analytical aren’t going to happen tonight. Instead, I’m just going to let my mind do its thing.
Which brings us to inspirations. Where do the story ideas come from? Anywhere and everywhere the jackrabbit lands. I have about a billion little notebooks that I use to make lists and jot notes. Whenever and wherever an idea comes, there’s always a little book nearby to jot it down. I mean, it will be right between the To Do in the Morning List, the Don’t Forget to Pack This List, and the Life Goals List, but at least it’s there when I need it.
Here’s a list of inspirations. (I love lists.)
In no particular order…
–Photographs. Especially ones that evoke a strong feeling. To me, strong feelings go along with stories, so I start to wonder what the story is. A while back The Pioneer Woman did a photo contest about landscapes. Two of my stories were inspired by pictures I saw there. This one was just begging for a story. And the perspective on this one made me think of someone very small looking up at the unexpectedly tall tulips.
–My son. He says the weirdest and funniest things. Like about monsters fighting houses. Or a prince trying to save a princess when he doesn’t know which one she is. These things just come out in a stream of other make believe and chatter, and sometimes my brain latches on to one and goes crazy. Of course, other times my tired brain just flops around and drowns in the flood. (See how it was a rabbit and now it’s some kind of pathetic fish? I see no reason to stick to just one metaphor.)
–Advertisements. My daughter loves to cut pictures out of old magazines. Then she gives them as presents to everyone in the family. One day she presented me with one that featured a fine old bottle of whiskey in a stream of water. Don’t ask me. But I did get to thinking about how intriguing it is to find a bottle in a body of water and what could be inside.
–Words. The Nerd Mafia are my new heroes. Certain words just make me think of certain kinds of people. And once you have an interesting person, there’s always a story of some kind nearby.
–Those little linky things. Nothing gives you writing ideas like someone saying, “Write about this.” Thanks, Mama Kat. Plus now I keep finding more and more linky things. I don’t think I can ever be a consistent weekly participant in any of them, mostly because the words “consistent” and “weekly” scare me to death, but I do think they’re fun, and I’ll take inspiration from wherever I can get it. Plus it actually gets me out into the world of other bloggers, reading and exploring (mostly with time I don’t really have). I feel like a small mouse poking my nose into a wide open candy store. I’m out of place, but I certainly don’t plan to just go away. Hey, I think there might be a story here…
Okay, we’ve now run the gamut from rabbit to fish to mouse. That’s the signal that it’s time for me to get back to pouring over my To Do lists for the next two days. I always feel that if I rewrite and reread and reorganize the list, it’s almost like I’m actually doing the things on it. Isn’t it great when you can feel productive while sitting on your couch watching Sherlock Holmes on Pay Per View?
Robert Downey, Jr… That’s going to take a whole other post.