In The Demon's Head #55: Story Art: Getting Ideas
August 28, 2012
Hello everyone I hope everything is well for you this Tuesday, I'm very excited to be bringing you this edition of “In The Demon's Head” as it is a continuation of our new blogging series “Story Art” I did an intro this past Friday and today I'd like to start with our first conversation, Getting Ideas.
This is a topic that some people feel they should never share any light on, I'm not sure why but I've heard that. On the flip side there are also people who share a lot of information on this topic and none of it seems all that important. I hope that I can share some of my experience with you without boring you or you thinking that it wasn't worth reading.
First, I'd like to make something clear, while it's not this way for everyone for a lot of people the best ideas seem like they come from nowhere. It doesn't make any sense but they will be walking along and boom an idea hits them that leaves them unable to think about anything else.
I'll share a story with you, there's a story in “More Than Memories” called the “7th Circle Railway” the idea came to me while I was riding along with Liz and we passed a railroad track that I had never seen before. I grabbed my phone and wrote a note down so I wouldn't forget it. Like that I had an idea for a short story.
Poetry tends to be a little different for me, ideas for them seem to come a bit harder. I think that those things come while writing. You start with a barebones idea and it evolves as you write. Now again these aren't things that are customary to every person but for me this is how it works.
Now how do you defer a good idea from a bad idea? First, before you say that you've never had a bad idea, this may be true for you however, you need to decide which stories you should tell. That's a hard thing to do when you just want to keep writing everything that comes into your head. This was something that I read in Stephen King's “On Writing” Not every story is yours to tell, so how do you decide which ones are yours?
You sleep on it.
What I mean is that if you come up with an idea that won't go away go to sleep. If you can sleep and wake up and the idea is still there then it's an idea that you should keep ahold of. Now if the idea won't go away then write it down somewhere, I keep everything in a journal, write it down then in a few weeks read the idea again or if you remember it think it over, if it still offers you the same amount of excitement that it did the day it was born then you have something you should write. If it doesn't make you excited then it's something that needs pitched because if your not excited to tell that story then it will come through in your writing and become one of those things that you should never have put out for the eyes of man in the first place.
For some people, ideas are hard to come by, for others it seems like the ideas do nothing but come to them time and time again. Those people may never use the ideas that they found, I've met a couple people like that, then there are people who would kill just for one or two ideas. In reality it's all about execution. You have to be willing to write the ideas that you have.
That closes out my Getting section of “Story Art” hopefully I didn't bore you. I'll be back Friday talking about where to begin a story. Until the next time you want to take a trip through the gates of hell and into the demon's head I'm Kyle Robinson wishing you a safe trip back to the surface.