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Gee Whillickers

What do you do for writing inspiration?

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For me, I need to get out and get moving. The ideas come quicker that way, and I can write half a story in my head while I'm out for a hike. Or a ride.

I'm lucky enough to be living near some astoundingly beautiful country. Here's some pics from today's ride, lots of room for story ideas while up in those mountains!

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See http://imgur.com/a/NQ2F5 for the full album.

Okay guys, what's your inspiration?

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Ideas for new stories just come to me. I don't do anything special. Inspiration for solving problems within a story usually happen overnight. I do most of my writing in the morning when I'm freshest, with afternoons and evenings for letting the stories rummage around in the back of my mind (they usually need a wash afterwards) so the ideas are ready for writing the next morning.

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When I'm out hiking or walking downtown or at the mall I'm usually thinking about new stories. Sometimes it might be nothing but a title, but then things start filling in and I'm plotting it and writing some of the dialogue in my head. Or it's a character that I mentally define. Or I see someone and that image gives me an idea for a plot. For existing multi-chapter stories I'll think about them when I go to bed and maybe come up with some ideas, but usually it's when I'm at the computer that those ideas come sort of automatically when I'm at the keyboard, and I start writing.

Colin :icon_geek:

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I think of Lug dancing naked.

Well, actually...

I'm always thinking of stories, thoughts that usually don't go anywhere. But most anything can tickle my creative bone. Something in the newspaper, on TV, seen when I'm out and around. More often people than scenery. Just the look on someone's face can start the gears meshing, the mind churning, and sometimes that process, those thoughts turn into stories.

But I try to do that. When I see something that catches my eye, it's almost automatic with me to start thinking along the lines of, how do I incorporated this into a story? I never did that before I began writing. Now, I do it all the time.

C

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My answer is the same as Cole's actually. Everything I see triggers my writer brain, and I start brainstorming how to apply it in story form, Inspiration has never been the difficult side, its always been the application of that inspiration that I falter.

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I think people watching is a big part of it, I like how a couple of people mentioned that. Even just a facial expression or an overheard one-line reply to something can be interesting. One of my stories (you'l have to guess which one) was written mostly around a single overhead comment like this, and I remember thinking 'I wonder what he meant by that, and I wonder why his expression was like that'.

Hot water is another thing that seems to get my mind working on plot ideas and twists. Under the shower, sitting in my hot tub or the bath, there's something about hot water that makes my mind wander in this direction.

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More often than not for me the inspiration come from some offhand remark I overhear. For instance the inspiration for 'Miss Jenkin's Work' came about when two women sitting in front of me on the bus where chatting about somebody and the one said 'Well she looks such I nice old lady you would never believe she was into something like that.' The other lady replied, "and going down to London to do it." Once I heard that all sorts of possibilities came to mind but I decided to write up the jewel thief one.

Strangely enough I will often start to write a story based on something I have overheard but it will lead nowhere and I will put the story to one side. However, something I have written in the incomplete story will give me an in to a story that I will write and finish. 'Joining the Movement' came about in this way.

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Now you made me go and count...I have fifteen story starts on my flash drive. Most of those came from various sources because like Cole anything I see or hear can inspire the urge to write.

To me a start can be a two page document or a four chapter run. These things await a moment of inspiration to continue. They hover in my mind and I have been known to combine two or three of these starts into a cohesive story. Thinking Halloween at the moment but I am working on another story....something always shakes loose.

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Hot water is another thing that seems to get my mind working on plot ideas and twists. Under the shower, sitting in my hot tub or the bath, there's something about hot water that makes my mind wander in this direction.

I carry a little notebook and pen almost wherever I go, and I also have one by the nightstand in case I get a weird idea right before I go to sleep, when I'm most relaxed. I think that's probably the state you're in when you soak in a hot bath.

I've gotten a few story ideas while working out at the gym, which is a 99% physical activity. One of the books on writing I read mentioned that "even when you're not sitting in front of the keyboard, a part of any writer's brain is still churning along, mulling over plot points, character issues, and other story ideas in the background. You have to train yourself to listen to them when a good idea pops up when you least expect it."

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I too look for inspiration in many places.

The beauty of nature and reading.

History and science are my favorites.

In reading history, we often find that fact is stranger than fiction.

We could not write what has happened because no one would believe it.

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So true James. I have looked at the sunset many times and said that if I could paint that as I see it, everyone would say that it looked fake, or unrealistic.

Same here. I have to deal with color mastering for video in my day job, and there's been many times (especially in recent years) where the sky looks so unreal, I comment to my partner, "man, if I made a picture like that in a movie, people would yell at me that the sky never looks like that in real life!"

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