Saturday, June 18, 2011

“Where do writers get their ideas?”

What is the one question that people wanted to know from a writer? Where do we get our ideas?

An idea for a story can be sparked at home, neighborhood, grocery store, planes, trains, or even a walk through the park. A logo on a box of cereal can ignite my imagination, if it’s unique and even better if it’s over the top. Overhearing a conversation from a group of teenagers at the mall, observing parents with their children, or watching an elderly couple strolling as they hold hands. Being observant to everything around me and using all my senses at all times gives me limitless ideas for characters and plots.

Like me, I believe most writers are hypersensitive and also will agree that we can’t pinpoint exactly how all the ideas stored in our creative heads will eventually mesh together into a book, they just do.

I attribute the success of creating a plot and characters to the fact that my five senses are on high alert, allowing my imagination to soar and spin a story with life’s simple pleasures. For example, I have an obscene collection of snow globes, I took one of my favorite ones and utilized it in my first novel, Sabrina’s Destiny.

My current book, “What A Girl Wants,” was sparked after I read an article written by Carly Phillips. She talked about how she puts herself through Writing Boot Camp to stay motivated while writing a book. When I saw the words, “Boot Camp,” I thought, how about Sex Boot Camp? (Yes, I know, my mind works in a mystery way that sometimes I can't even fathom). From there, I created my heroine and hero, and their journey in What A Girl Wants.

Our creative minds are like a book of unlit matches and it all it takes is a small strike with a word, a line, a certain look, even a slogan on an old college T-shirt to ignite our creative flame and a roaring fire for a novel.

There is a myth out there that writers will store things that happen to their friends and family to be used in a book later on. Is it fact or fiction? Let’s just say, if you do something outlandish and tell a writer about it. . . .you just never know if one of the many characters residing in a writer’s head will perhaps have the same experience. :)

About the Author:

Witty, humorous, suspenseful, sexy--words used to describe Selena Robins writing. A self-admitted chocolate guru (okay, perhaps a bit obsessed), she dances with her dog, sings into her hairbrush & writes in her PJ's.

You can visit Selena at her website: https://selenarobins.com/
Follow her on her blog: http://selenarobinsmusings.wordpress.com/


Tina Donahue said...

I'm a chocoholic too, write in my grubs (I work my EDJ from home), but don't sing to my hairbrush. Two out of three ain't bad. Great blog, Selena!! :)

Kathy Otten said...

I guess I'm a bit different when it comes to story ideas. My characters come to me first and as I ask them questions about their goals and fears, then I find out their stories. I don't think I've ever incorporated anything a friend or family member told me into a story. I usually write in jeans and a T-shirt and if I wasn't trying to lose weight I'd probably have chocolate nearby.

Sarah J. McNeal said...

Like you, Selena, I get story ideas from my environment and every other place on the map. You just never know when a story pearl will roll your way and manifest itself in your next book. I keep a writer's journal with me every where I go to jot down tidbits I see or hear.
Wonderful and interesting blog, Selena.

Delaney Diamond said...

Story ideas come from so many places. Oftentimes it's something I experienced in my own life or reading, watching TV, etc. Oh, and I'm a fellow chocolate lover. :)

Fiona McGier said...

Chocolate is good, if it's so dark it's bitter. But my snack of choice is usually something salty and crunchy. And I can't wait for all of the kids to move out of the house so I can stop wearing PJs entirely! (Chorus of, "Ew, Mom, gross!)

But our muses court us wherever and whenever they feel like it, and we are at their mercy. Thankfully.

Cheryl Pierson said...

Hi y'all,
I loved this post Selena. I have never been at a loss for a story idea. I teach fiction writing classes and it boggles my mind when people sign up to take my class and the first thing they ask is "How do you get an idea to write about?" I want to say, "How do you NOT?" So many ideas everywhere, out there, and they just come from all over. I love to play the "what if" game. Oh, and I love chocolate, too. LOL

Adele Dubois said...

Selena--Excellent post! I think readers want to know where we authors get our ideas, because they're curious about how our imaginations work. Creative people really do think differently. You're right about that spark!


Selena Robins said...

Thanks to you all for stopping by and glad you enjoyed my musings. We were out doing a pre-Father's day celebration in Little Italy yesterday, so just now have a few moments to catch up online.

As for chocolate, yes, the darker the better, I also like salty things, but find that if I indulge in something sinful (we're talking food, right? LOL) that chocolate is easiest, because I can stop at one or two squares...but with other things...well, not so easy.

Have a wonderful rest of the weekend!