About NaNoWriMo Prep: Mining for a Story

As I mentioned yesterday, NaNoWriMo is fast around the corner. While I acknowledge there are two main types of writers (I’ll talk about that tomorrow), there is something we all agree on. Everyone needs to have an idea before they sit down and write. It doesn’t have to be much. It can be an idea for a final scene, beginning, or anywhere in between. It can be a set up of a world. it can be a character that wants to spring to life. But before anyone sits down, there has to be some sort of idea that can then blossom on the page. The problem is sometimes finding that idea is difficult.

A good idea is worth a million bucks. In fact, if you discovered an idea that had never been touched before, then you deserve more than a million, a billion is more fitting. This is simply because no story is new. At this point, a few thousand years into our existence, every story has already been told. I’m not going to go into the number of story bases there are as I’ve read anything from 6 t 14. And I believe I encountered someone who detailed 21 different stories. The point is, if you are looking for something truly original, it isn’t out there as far as story structure goes. You can, however, foster an original idea by making the aspects of your story unique. I would love to see a story about human nature if humans evolved from a different creature, like say a cat.

Finding your story can be an interesting process. For some people, observing the world and injecting their own perceptions of what happened can trigger an urge to write. Others want to explain a scenario they witness and complete the story they see. Some people are struck by a situation when they try to problem solve or contemplate a global issue. At times, creators just want to tell a story better than someone else did. I fall into the group who lets their mind wander into the what if that lends itself to impossibility. But if there is one thing that can be true of all those who create stories, the ideas come best when you embrace life and witness what is going on right in front of you. Take a walk. Look at the sky. Do something and an idea will surely come to you when you least expect it.

Remember the key is an idea. You don’t need anything more than that to make a story come to life.

How do you find ideas for your stories?

3 thoughts on “About NaNoWriMo Prep: Mining for a Story

  1. Honestly, I sometimes dream them, so they come from that stew of the unconscious we all have. Since I tend to write Urban Fantasy, this is less of a problem than you might think 😉

    Other times, I see something in the news that piques my interest, and I start playing the “What if…?” games.

  2. Pingback: Roundup October 2013 | So, I pondered...

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