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Do you get a random idea that sparks in your mind that you decide to write about? Maybe you use an incident that's happened to you before or an incident that you've witnessed?

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How do I pick plots?

 

With a dartboard and a blindfold.

And sometimes I consult an old magic 8-ball.

 

My process can be rather dangerous to be around.

 

😄😁😁

 

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The important thing is not where the plot ideas come from, it is which I select. The process has not been a conscious one. The novels I wrote all drew on my personal struggles and weaknesses as a means for me to wrestle with and overcome them vicariously, but at the time I wrote them (or at least began them) I was not aware of the connection. One novel was about recognizing and overcoming jealousy, another about loyalty, and a third about protecting your family. This even affects my nonfiction. One of them was about resilience, and overcoming anxiety was my big struggle before I wrote that. The book I am writing now is ostensibly about finding peace, but my struggle is managing time and that is the angle I am taking.

 

I even prefer such topics to stories that I know could be more popular. A few years before Trump was elected I had an idea for a book that I would have titled "Bordering on Insanity", about the growing crisis at the southern border. Given what is going on now, it would have been a bestseller, but not a book that would help me (and hopefully others) grow. 

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28 minutes ago, Accord64 said:

How do I pick plots?

 

With a dartboard and a blindfold.

Yeah, I'm afraid to see what the rest of your writing has in store...

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18 hours ago, Ky_GirlatHeart said:

That reminds me of the Kool-Aid commercials on TV. The red punch dude would say, "Oh, yeah!" at the end of the commercial.

 

koolaid.gif.10636b6234472d1be97a2f6c0a4d04a8.gif

 

Not sure why there's a "TV14 DL" rating. Maybe he cussed a bit after breaking through that wall? 😄

 

 

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I also get ideas all the time. I flesh them out a bit in a word doc, give them a file, and stick them at the back of my computer until they're needed. I have 21 years of those files. I'm still thinking...maybe one day...

 

Good advice: never waste your writing. Even that fantabulous stuff you've deleted should be saved. Or that character that is uber interesting but just doesn't fit. That great writing might come in handy for another project.

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:23 AM, Ky_GirlatHeart said:

Do you get a random idea that sparks in your mind that you decide to write about? Maybe you use an incident that's happened to you before or an incident that you've witnessed?

 

I look at the Content Genre for my story and then find a plot which works within the genre guidelines. 
https://storygrid.com/global-genre-epic-fantasy-stories/
 

Quote

 

  • Fundamentally, the way I look at a complex story is the same way I look at a simpler one, by asking some questions: What’s the basic human need at stake?
  • What’s the primary life value that changes from the beginning of the story to the end? 
  • What is the nature of the force of antagonism?

 


Sometimes I find the plot first and decipher the genre from there. My debut novel is a Thriller and I expected the sequel would be as well. However, when I sat down to chart out the primary plot points, I discovered that the Global Life Value shift was from Tyranny to Justice, which makes it a Crime story.

As for where my story ideas come from in general, I think the typical answer is 'Schenectady.' 😉 

(Which is to say, 'everywhere'–I get my story ideas from everywhere.)

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:23 AM, Ky_GirlatHeart said:

Do you get a random idea that sparks in your mind that you decide to write about? Maybe you use an incident that's happened to you before or an incident that you've witnessed?

 

Yeah, pretty much all of those and more...

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