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Monday, June 26, 2006

The Idea Trove

At any given writers' conference, someone will ask, "Where do you get your ideas?"

If you're one of those people, I apologize in advance and ask that you not take the rest of this posting too personally, please.

When that question comes up, I grab hold of my notions of tolerance and tact and keep myself from yelling, "Oh, for crying out loud!"

I see ideas EVERYWHERE, every day, all the time. I've wondered at the difference between me and those people. Do they have some internal screening mechanism that blocks ideas according to algorythms like, too hard to write? too personal to ask anyone about? take too long? would get published only by a magazine you can't possibly crack (like the New Yorker)?

Sometimes our involvement in a project, hobby, etc., distracts us from seeing the story possibilities. I've smacked my forehead on more than one occasion when I've realized that I could have written the article in front of me. For example, my brother-in-law plays a strategy game called WarHammer. Forehead smack when I saw the feature on a WarHammer convention in the Washington Post. It didn't dawn on me to ask about his hobby.


Blogger Lois said...

just testing

11:12 PM  
Anonymous Taryn said...

Amen, sister... And I don't think you need to apologize either! People who ask that question must literally have their eyes closed. (On the other hand, are they actually expecting the speaker to GIVE them ideas? How lazy are they?) Right there with ya.

2:51 PM  
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