So a friend in my writing group asked me today, where do you get your inspiration.
I think all writers get this question at one time or another. And we’ve all read a million answers that sound similar, dreams, random life acts, etc etc.
I wish my ideas were that easy.
Almost every moment of every day I have stories playing in my head. It will probably sound weird but I take the stories, novels of others and think about them in a what if scenario. For example, I recently read the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by JR Ward and have been working on what if. What if the brothers had other children, other relatives, what if they formed a separate gym and started actively recruiting soldiers who didn’t have warrior blood as well?
I invent characters, personalities, scenarios that would likely never happen in a Ward world. But it keeps me thinking. I spend each night, usually from to dancing around my bedroom, ipod in hand thinking of ways to make my characters musicians.
Eventually the characters evolve and want their own stories. And for those who've read my work, they are nothing like the stuff they originally evolved from.
You’re probably thinking it sounds very fan fic like, and I suppose it does, though I’ve never truly written fan fiction. Used to read a lot of it. But my ideas get to be these giant monster octopuses with 8 legs of random ideas lashing at me from all directions.
So I tried to weed out the most viable idea and then present on the page. If I struggle with parts of it I take it to the writing group to help feed me things. Often they throw out ideas that I can’t use, but it does inspire others to build and usually gives me a focus.
Unlike most I don’t do a lot of outlining. I usually have a general idea of where the story will go, but I really let the character’s guide me. Sounds crazy to people who aren’t writers, but for those of us who are, sometimes it’s just better to let the voices out.
It's how I know Seiran isn't done yet, cause he's still pretty strong in my head. The others, they come in slowly and need some work to build. But the character comes first, and once they are strong enough in my mind, they tell me about their situation and world. So I don't spend much time world building, or backstory building, cause these guys know who they are and what they have to say.
Yeah it sounds crazy to me sometimes too.