Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Way We Are: Figuring Things Out

Has everyone had a good holiday season so far? I have been loving it something fierce! But now we're on the downside of it and I just really wish it would last another week or two or seven. Not only has it given me lots and lots of chances to spend quality time with family, but it's given me time to clean and to WRITE! As I'm working through a first draft, it got me wondering....

Where are you when you get your best ideas?

I'm not talking about that initial spark of an idea for a new story. I'm talking about figuring out that missing puzzle piece. That idea of how to work your next scene, or where to take a certain character's arc, or how to have your character figure out that last piece of information they need for the ending scenes. The million things you have to work through as you are writing. Where is your best place for getting that kind of inspiration?

For me, it's most frequently in one of five places. In the car, in the shower, while on a walk, while making dinner, and while folding clothes. So... I guess the places where my body is busy doing something, but my mind is free to wander.

How about you?

25 comments:

BECKY said...

Hi Peggy! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Here we are...a lot like each other again! I also have my best writing thoughts while driving, walking, and sometimes showering. A really BIG one is hearing a certain song! Thanks for always writing such great blog posts!

Mara Rae said...

Count me in for the whole "busy body, wandering mind" thing. Showering, doing my hair or makeup, and running are all activities that seem to drum up good ideas. Oh, and happy holidays!

Kelley said...

Mine are in bed or the shower or just while I'm writing. (I'm a total panster).

Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking said...

Mine are in bed in the mornings when I wake up or right before I go to sleep. I keep a pad near by so I can write them down. Sounds like you have had a great holiday season. Hope your New Year is truly blessed.

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

As with you, ideas tend to show up when most of me is busy doing something other than writing or revising--when my mind is roaming. That's fine as long as paper and pens are always within reach.

S. L. Hennessy said...

For me, it's running. Which sucks because I HATE to run. But it works. Sigh.

Donna K. Weaver said...

You know, that's really been so different for me, depending upon the projects. For my first one, the story came to me in a dream. But I had to figure out a way to get to that place, so I bounced ideas off my family though they weren't much help. That's when the news came in handy. lol

prerna pickett said...

while I'm trying to go to sleep...that's when the best inspiration hits.

Angela Brown said...

Glad the holidays are going well for you. They have been kind to me.

I just recently got a big inspiration for a current WiP, trying to figure out how to place my character into an unexpected situation, while going to sleep. You know that moment just on the cusp to REM, that's when it hit me. It struck so strong that I recall, barely, dreaming of how the scene could play out.

J. A. Bennett said...

I totally agree with you, and I would add reading and watching movies to the list :)

Jenny S. Morris said...

Listening to music while driving in my car is my #1 spot for finding the missing puzzle piece. I do get aha moments after watching movies or TV shows or seeing picture sometimes.

Carrie Butler said...

It's almost always in the shower.

I so need to get some of those Aqua Notes! I'm always sprinting down the hall, holding my towel up, blinking the soap out of my eyes, and searching for a Post-It. So sad. Haha :)

Joshua said...

The vast majority of my ideas come at a time when I'm physically incapable of writing them down. Like last night, I was in bed, eyes heavy from Ambien, and a tremendous idea came to me, but I had not the strength to sit back up, grab my iPad, and write notes. When I woke up this morning, the idea was gone, but I still remember it being one of those "holy crap, that's awesome" moments. And that's all I remember.

Tara Tyler said...

ditto!

who's big idea was it to jam halloween, thanksgiving & christmas together in the last 3 months of the year?

editing going splendidly! new ideas also everywhere, jotted down & filed...

glad you had a productive xmas!

Kelly Polark said...

I sometimes get them while I'm just falling asleep. I really need to keep a pen and pad at my bedside!

Imogen said...

For me, inspiration strikes when I'm almost asleep, which is annoying because then I have to wake up and write it down!

Other inspiring places are: In the shower (a common one I think), when I'm running, and when I'm just chatting with my sister. She's a great help when I'm stuck.

Lan said...

I am definitely an in the car inspiration person. There's just something about going for a road trip that sparks lots of good ideas in my head!

Athena Franco said...

Sometimes right before I go to sleep, which is the worst! I usually flail about in the darkness for my phone and use it to leave a garbled text note to myself. If I'm lucky though it's while watching a movie or just daydreaming.

Christa said...

So glad you are getting to write. I feel like I am in a candy-coated holiday vortex of hell. I have missed my writing space so much. Soon, soon, soon...

Hannah Hounshell said...

I'm not sure why, but I always seem to get my ideas when I'm just about to drift off to sleep for the night. It would be very frustrating, but that seems to be the time for it so I just keep a flashlight, note pad, and pen by the bed and scribble it down as fast as possible so I can get back to sleep. Sometimes it works. :)p

Lani Wendt Young said...

A lot of my ideas come when Im working out/going for a run or walk. Which is fabulous for inspiring ideas BUT then i get home and shower and battle with rambunctious children and deal with a chaotic house that has gotten more chaotic in my absence...and then when i finally sit down to throw all those ideas on paper? theyre gone. ugh.

Another awesome place to get writing ideas is at the movies. Even a awful movie can give me great ideas of what NOT to do, or help me see my WIP in a different light. Defn. Go to lots and lots of movies!

Jessie Humphries said...

Ditto on movies. Reading. Driving. Working on suing people. Did I just admit that?

Paul Tobin said...

I get some ideas first thing in the morning when I am doing Tai chi, the ideas seem to pop in to my head. Others I get when I sit down to write, usually in the morning, or I'll hear something, see something that I think I can use.

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Exactly the same for me!

Tasha Seegmiller said...

Blowing my hair dry or driving to work. I'm certain some people think I'm being rude because I get to the school and don't want to talk to anyone until I've written the idea down.