Take time to deliberate, but when the time for action has arrived, stop thinking and go in.
- Napoleon

Friday, April 13, 2007

Writing Ideas

If you're like me, your writing synapses are firing on 16 cylinders, and you've got ideas popping into your head at the oddest times - usually when you don't have pen and paper handy. You're also getting ideas for things you've never written. Or at least, I am.

So far I've written two literary thrillers. Wonderful. I have another lit thriller - temporarily called Bloodflow - on the back burner waiting for me to work on it. I have a few thriller-ish ideas in my 'Writing Ideas' file, too. But the majority of my unwritten ideas are for books outside that genre. The only reason I wrote thrillers to start is those were the stories that were pushing the hardest to get out of my head and onto paper.

Blink is literary and it's a bit thrilling, but not so much that it's defined by it. (Unfortunately, it's also SF in that way, but that's a post for another time.)

AWJ is a mystery leaning on the suspense side.

Still neither of these are too far from the lit thriller genre, and I'm betting you're wondering where I'm going with this.

I originally started out writing SF/F... when I was 14. I have a book mostly written and sitting in the same blue folder it's been in since the 9th grade. At that age, fantasy was my favorite genre, with SF in close second. Back then I was sure I'd be a fantasy novelist - schmoozing with the likes of Terry Brooks and Patricia McKillip and maybe even Piers Anthony.

All that was forgotten as I got older. I let the fantasy part of my brain slip away. I still read it but the urge has never been there to write it. Why? The short answer is I grew up. The long answer is that I have never been able to come up with an original idea for a SF/F story.

Until now...

I just had an epiphany, and the very first fantasy story to hit my Writing Ideas file is now written out so I don't forget. It'll have to wait a while. I still have AWJ and Bloodflow to write and Blink to finish. But it'll be good and fresh. (I think... I hope.)

Anything unusual in your idea file? Any ideas that completely break from your previous genres?

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