I started this series last week and here are more ideas a reader may consider useful .
1. Writer’s Block!
I had to quickly learn that writer’s block does not exist. What does exist is procrastination. Even if it takes months to work out what happens next in a story, eventually it can be found. What matters is hanging in there. I often find that it’s when I log off in despair that the next idea comes to me. Often this happens after I turn off my computer. I still think my best ideas spring from what I read and what I watch. Even the worst TV soapie can remind me of something that might be added to an ms. Watching the news on TV, listening to the radio, and keeping an eye on social media… all these are provide fountains of ideas. Some times it’s a good thing to let something rest and go onto something new.
There have been times when I have seriously thought about taking a job as a supermarket chick because of the many diverse characters that will pass by. Trams, buses and trains are wonderful sources of inspiration. Hate those folk who speak loudly on their mobiles? I listen into them voraciously. It’s all grist for the mill.
2. Who! What! Where and How!
Let me give an example of how these can be used. In my latest novel for middle grade readers “eSide: A Journey Through Cyberspace”, it works like this.
Who? Sam and Melody, two 12 Year Old best friends.Hecate Badminton, and tGF, the absentminded good magician, plus some of the people who come to the Conch Cafe.
What? The Good-Luck -Conch has been stolen by the wicked witch Hecate Badminton.
Where? Some of the action takes place in the Conch Cafe run by Sam’s mother, Kate. The rest in cyberspace.
How? Hecate, the most wicked witch of all, sends Sam and Melody, with only a magic monitor as protection, into weird digital world via her mainframe computer.
3. The all important pitch!
If you can’t do this with with your novel/ms/ story picture book, you have a problem. I used this technique many years ago when I taught year 12 literature. Try it? here is my 50 word pitch for my latest YA novel: ‘Dessi’s Romance’.
‘When best friends Dessi and Emma are both attracted to the same man, and only Emma can travel north to ‘Schoolies Week’, it threatens to split their long term relationship. This story explores some of the choices these girls must make to have their friendship confirmed and help them mature.
I intend these tips to continue. However, I am out of town next week and then in hospital so it might take awhile to get back to it.
In the meantime good luck to all emerging creators. Please contact me and let me know how helpful these tips are.
Pitching your idea.