I can imagine a great number of you has new story ideas on a daily basis, at least, if you are the kind of person that lets your mind wander every now and again. For me, that usually happens when I am out driving. But, it can happen when we do other mundane things as well, such as doing the dishes, showering, or whenever it is impossible to do anything else but the task at hand.
Anyhow, we all have untapped ideas for stories and sometimes it can feel overwhelming choosing which idea to proceed with.
I’ve read that you should let go of some of those ideas if you feel overwhelmed, but how do you choose which ones to let go off?
Obviously, you can’t turn all your ideas into novels, or even short stories. So whenever I get a new story idea, I make it into a flash fiction; a story no longer than a thousand words.
Doing this gives you something tangible from your idea, rather than just abandoning it.
It really doesn’t take that long to write a flash fiction, and anyone can do it, no matter how little time you may think you have.
When you’ve finished your flash fiction, you will know whether or not you will be able to expand the story even further. But even if you don’t, you will still have created something, something to be proud of.
Though I don’t agree with them all, there is some advice to be had here as well.
He jerked his head up towards the sky and let the warming rays of the sun rejuvenate his spirits. With a deep breath, he returned to his notebook and scribbled skilfully the lines and shapes of what he saw. An hour went by and the sun slowly hid behind tall buildings that surrounded him.
As it fully disappeared, he relaxed and slumped on his bench. With a sigh, he looked around as the city darkened and a gloomy green light engulfed the city. ‘Deadlight’, he called them.
While looking around, he glanced at his sketchbook and frowned. He then stood hastily and walked down the crowded street, clenching his notebook tightly.
A shiver went down his spine as people whisked by him, chafing against his body. He tried his best to avoid them, but it was impossible, too many in such a small space.
My mind once dwelled exclusively in games, in movies and in TV shows.
Many an hour was spent – time wasted.
But was it really?
For games and movies provide visual aid to the things we have yet to see.
To scenery, which we have yet to phantom.
I want to believe that gaming provided me with a foundation for my own imagination.
Yet, as of now… my body rejects it.
My stomach pit when I do not write. Physically impossible to do anything else!
My body and soul rejects my old life; not yet! it says.
Someday, I can go back to those blissful days of gaming.
But now you must write! read! and at times, be alone with your thoughts.
There is nothing else.
You must improve!
The music and the motions of the violinist mesmerised him. The beauty and the skill in creating those notes were unmistaken. It formed the perfect atmosphere for the purpose of the party. He glanced around, finding people in fancy suits and pretty dresses that mingled amongst themselves; bowing politely as they discovered the prestige and wealth their conversation partners.
He had never understood this overly polite culture, where a person became someone’s better by having more money and power than the other, and should be revered and respected beyond common courtesy.
He did enjoy Japan, however, that was not the problem. It was his job, and the things he was expected to achieve. The brutal hours; the hierarchy; and the almost total lack of free time, made the generous salary less attractive the longer he stayed. It sucked the life out of him.
I groaned in pleasure as I stretched out my limbs and felt blood stream back into my lower back. With a yawn, I entered a quaint, yet shaggy, diner next to the road. I hadn’t eaten since last night, too afraid to stop at any other diner on the dusty roads of Arizona.
It should be fine, however, I must eat eventually.
The diner was surprisingly crowded for such a desolate area. Perhaps there’s a town nearby?
The holster chafed against my side as I sat in one of the stalls by the window. I corrected it and glanced at the handle of the gun that hid underneath my jacket. I was glad that I hadn’t used it yet. Though, I expected to… soon.
How often do you feel that the hours of the day just isn’t enough? I feel you…but it is not like I waste my time or anything. Heck, I spend 7-8 hours a day writing when I am not working part-time as a substitute teacher.
So, why do I feel like the days aren’t enough, even if I spend my time wisely?
I am at that stage of early improvement, when the writing goes from horrendous, to bad; adequate, to good. But then someone brings you back to reality and you realise that you are still bad. But at the very least, you are not horrendous anymore, you have improved. But do you improve quick enough?
There is a battle against time when you are a writer. It takes so much time to become well enough at your craft, before anyone would even consider buying your work, or hire you for that matter. There is always a sense of urgency. I don’t know how it is to have a publishing contract, but I can imagine that that sense of urgency still lingers even then, it never goes away.
So should you punish yourself? Do you need to commit your entire being into writing? To cast away everything else that is you? Until the glorious day when you become validated as a writer? I don’t really know. All I know is that time is short, and I cannot let the time be wasted.
I will be able to relax… someday.
“The best time to write is early in the morning” ever heard that before? Bullshit! I can be creative whenever I want!… or so I thought.
I have found that the writers muse is a very fickle thing. For instance, I have no problem writing a lot during the afternoon, or even late in the evening. But that is only true if I start writing early in the morning.
This became apparent to me after working part-time as a substitute teacher.
One day, after a day’s work (I came home around 4 or 5 pm) I just lazily sat around and browsed the web, watched some youtube videos. I couldn’t focus! I could not do any serious writing. At least, it took a while before my mind started to adjust towards doing creative work.
I believe, writing is like warming up before a jog. Your performance is a lot better if you do.
In other words; You can write for much longer if you start early.
But, ultimately, there are a lot more to it than that. I highly recommend reading this. It might help you find your creative optimum.
Fame lent him no comfort as he sat in his study, watching the mob on the other side. Only a wall prevented them from amassing on his property. As he watched, he felt like a lord, a lord hated, and protected by the provision of god; for he is not like anyone else. He holds a power that no one else does… they will soon be aware.
A smile grew on his face as he reached down the drawer. The glow surrounded his hand and engulfed the object. But he knew what it was, and he knew that it would lead him to his destiny.
For as long as I can remember I had trouble staying quiet at night, I screamed, I swore, and I shouted. I also sleepwalked, often aimlessly before I realised what I was doing. Sometimes I even physically tried to ward off enemies, punch them and/or take cover.
Whenever that happened my heart was pounding, I was genuinely scared, and took several minutes before my mind was able to collect itself and realise how preposterous it would be that an assassin is out to kill me. For a while I considered that I had post traumatic stress disorder.
This went on for many years. However, I was calm and collected when I was awake. Perhaps I had anger issues that I suppressed?
In anycase that suddenly changed when I began writing and I believe I know why. People like us who always think, always dream, play out scenarios in our heads daily (some violent and some not so much); these thoughts gets stored in our subconsciousness and when we sleep they sprout out and grabs a hold of us!
I believe that that is why some people have restless nights. But when we begin to write those thoughts down, we receive an outlet. Think about it, when we write down our ideas on paper we can basically throw that idea out of our mind because it is stored somewhere other than in our head. Thus, our brains only has to format the mundane events that happens during everyday life, and presto! the nights are calm again.
Logitech has an interesting giveaway this week. The prices are okay, but the fun lie with writing a story in eight tweets or less.
Though I think eight tweets is a bit too generous, it is an good opportunity to write whatever comes to mind. This is my favourite process in writing, it is like exploring a new land; you will never know where your mind takes you.
Here is what I wrote for the contest;
Things never really goes as planned. Life is funny that way, yet you still appreciate the sincerity of it.
I don’t know what happens when we die, but as life is forthright, then so too in death; I shall have no worries.
“Poetic… ngh,” there goes another one. I’ll be there soon… “I’m so sorry”
… I think I will write a comedy next time.