Usually, when it comes to my fiction writing, I do not lack for ideas. This may sound boastful, but I am simply stating a fact. If anything, I may have too many ideas and sometimes there is a bit of a bottle-neck effect, like too much in my mouth to swallow … but I try to swallow it anyway. Where I lack that sort of thing is for this present situation, for writing my weekly blogs. Sometimes I get … not stuck, that’s not the correct word … more like blanked. I sometimes find myself in a fog of bareness and desolation.
Sure, I go ahead and write 10 or 20 ideas then in my journal, but there is actually an easier way to do this — at least for me. What I do is write a little fiction, a short story or a very short story, it doesn’t have to be longer than a few paragraphs, maybe a page or two, depending on how carried away I get. It doesn’t matter if it’s dreck, what matters is getting it down on paper (again, this is what works for me, and I prefer the old paper and pen). Once that is out of the way, I turn to writing a blog, once again, and, once again, something comes to me pretty quickly. I share this to help.
There is a wonderful book, full of motivation and prompts, called The Daily Writer by Fred White. There is a prompt for every day of the year (yes, just like the title states). While some of the prompts are better than others, I find that most are terrific. For October 20, 2019, for example, there are thoughts on inspiration. Sure, the book states, it’s great to be inspired, to wake up and go to work on writing, every day. However, life doesn’t always work that way. Instead, to generate some active inspiration, start a short story going right now, right at this moment. (Get a journal and a pen or turn on your computer. I’ll wait. Hmm da da dummm. Hmmm humm humm.)
OK. Now, “plunge directly into a story situation in which your protagonist meets one of the following individuals:
· A former lover
· Someone who, five years ago, vowed: ‘If I ever see you again, I’ll kill you.’
· A magician reduced to homelessness and panhandling
Work steadily; after about half an hour, active inspiration should keep you going until you finish the draft.”
Now, isn’t this wonderful? I just shared with you a piece of active inspiration, inspiration to begin writing. What can be better than that? I know, I could also hand you a cup of tea, coffee or glass of cold milk and a snickerdoodle cookie along with it, but I am here and you are out there, so it’s not practical.
And here I am at five hundred words.