The Muse, he’s a flighty little minx. One day he’s shirtless, flexing his pecs and driving you crazy with story ideas. The next day, he’s out all night with his drinking buddies, not answering your phone calls, and ignoring your texts even though it’s 3 a.m. and you’re on deadline.
Two weeks ago I was stuck without an idea for a short story. My brain was an empty refrigerator with only moldy Havarti cheese and flat soda inside. Story inspiration can come from anywhere, photos, newspaper articles, or bits of conversations. I had tried everything to coax my muse out of hiding, online plot generators, pictures from Pinterest, Wikipedia searches, chocolate. Click after click on fantasy location images on DeviantArt yielded no results. Even when I had found something I liked, a first line didn’t materialize.
After three hours, I grew desperate. My eyes were bloodshot. Light from the computer screen shone through my eyelids when I blinked. The red numbers on my digital clock changed to 2:45 a.m. I had to commute to work in a few hours.
What did I do?
I threw my laptop across the room, railed against the Gods who hated me, and vowed to never, ever write again.
Okay, not really.
I burrowed my toned, voluptuous butt into my chair. I grabbed my BIC pencil #2 and wrote the first thing that popped into my noggin. Then, I went to bed.
The next evening at my writing desk, I read the line in my notebook from the night prior.
Oh, wow. Wow!
It was the greatest opening line ever written, or ever will be written in the history of literature.
Kidding! It was total crap. The line could not pass as a complete sentence, but I used it as a trampoline. More words were dumped on the page until I wrote a short story that I could edit into something.
That’s the writing process folks or at least my process.
Here are a few websites with creative writing prompts:
Twenty Fantasy Story Ideas: http://thewritepractice.com/fantasy-story-ideas/
Science Fiction Story Ideas – Part 10: Monsters: http://www.writepop.com/science-fiction-story-ideas/1001-story-ideas-part-10-monsters
72 Short Story Ideas To Supercharge Your Writing: http://thejohnfox.com/2016/06/short-story-ideas/
Creative Writing Prompts for Young Adult (YA) Fiction: http://thejohnfox.com/2016/06/creative-writing-prompts-young-adult-ya/
101 Fabulous Blog Topic Ideas: http://www.molly-greene.com/101-blog-topic-ideas/
What did you do when you were stuck without a story idea?
Hope you liked this week’s blog post. You can read the first chapters of my urban fantasy series The Children of Ekhidna and Typhoeus on the books page.
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