Friday, June 17, 2011

Priming the pump

I got an idea for a new book on the way home from work. I think it'll be fun to write when I get around to it, but it's not ready to write yet. I have an idea, not a story--certainly nothing resembling a plot.

By the time I got home, though, I had worked out the main character's problems and how he's going to attempt to solve them. So I sat down and wrote 1,500 words. Now I'll set it aside for a few months or maybe even a few years while my subconscious works on the story and I finish other projects.

So why did I write those 1,500 words if I don't plan to continue right away? I do this a lot and it has several purposes. The main one is just to remind myself about the idea in case I forget. Also, gets my brain thinking about possibilities. And when I do come back to it, I have something to build on.

I'll probably throw out everything I've just written. But that's okay, it's just an idea.

9 comments:

Conor said...

Yay! Inspiration!

Cate Gardner said...

I love it when a new idea hits.

K.C. Shaw said...

Conor--It's fun!

Cate--Me too, although goodness knows I have enough novel ideas to last me a decade or two.

Alan W. Davidson said...

Writing ideas down is definately a great idea. The number of times I've had story ideas, and no pen handy, only to forget about them later...

Sitting your story idea aside for years is serious long-term planning, Kate.

Har! My word ver is 'elated'.

K.C. Shaw said...

Well, I may not set it aside for long after all. I've been writing on it all day. I think mostly my brain is desperate for a break from Bloodhound.

Natalie L. Sin said...

I'm with you. Story ideas need to grow a little, or else we forget about them. I keep a folder on my computer for ideas!

K.C. Shaw said...

I have some pages where I jot obscure notes for future stories, some of the notes so obscure that I have no idea what they mean. Like the note that simply reads "mammoth." What?

Danielle Ferries said...

I like to get an idea down then am mostly happy to let it sit, although sometimes it calls to me as well and I want to keep working on it. As regards "mammoth" - isn't it funny how something is important enough to write it down at the time, yet our brains somehow don't think it important enough to retain the information for later.

K.C. Shaw said...

I'm sure the mammoth story would have been awesome, if only I could remember it.