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

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Simmering Ideas

Sometimes my brain is just a big dutch oven. I have all of these ideas thrown in there and each one isn't just sitting there stagnant. It's simmering.

Take this idea I had last year for a quirky little mystery. I didn't know much about what I was going to do with it. Actually I only had the name of the protagonist, but it's such an awesome name I knew I had to write his story someday.

The thing about simmering in my head is I never know when something is going to bubble to the surface. Today, the little mystery simmered to the top, bubbled forth the opening paragraphs and promptly sunk back down into stew. First two paragraphs are, if you'll pardon the dock-worker speak, fucking awesome.

I could kiss myself.

Unfortunately, I just got two incredible paragraphs. Or maybe I should say fortunately. The story isn't going anywhere, and I have three other stories demanding my attention right now. This story, tentatively called "Hard Candy" will still be there when I'm ready to write it.

Thank goodness I write them all down. I never know when one of them is going to pop out of the storeroom and smack me around.

Do any of you have stories you know someday are going to be killer, but you just haven't been ready to write them yet?


Tia said...

The one that I'm working on now. My original opening sentence was, "It was a beautiful night for starcasting." I had about a page and a half after that of a scene that I never ended up using. The story simmered the entire time I worked on my last novel.

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

I think so. But I also have stories I thought were great when I was working on them, but which were later broken up for parts. So for me it can work in both directions.

Wendy Roberts said...

I hopped over from the Muse, News blog to check out the quote on the top of your blog (thanks for telling us about it) :)

I love your idea post. I find it difficult to separate the "stew" ideas from an idea that's just a speck of pepper...one that won't carry an entire story.

Melissa Marsh said...

(surfed over here from Anissa's blog)

I have a character who has been with me sine the 6th grade. I knew I had to write his story someday, but just didn't know when. It finally came time about two years ago. Unfortunately, he's been relegated to the sidelines since I decided to switch genres. ;-)

Maya Reynolds said...

B.E.: Yes, I've had two plot ideas that I have been playing with for a couple of years now. I knew they were dynamite; I just needed to figure out how to put them down on paper.

I pulled them out periodically, played with them for a while and then put them up again.

You've hit me at a raw moment because I saw a preview in the theatre last night: Jodie Foster is about to star in a film that sounds just like one of my two ideas. Grrrr. That's what I get for not putting them on the front burner.

B.E. Sanderson said...

Arrgghh. I hate that. I feel for you, Maya.