Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Blessed Are the Friends


You’ve heard the ubiquitous question, “where do your stories/ideas come from?”
Invariably the sweeping answer is, “everywhere.


But a truer answer is that different people tend to get ideas in idiosyncratic ways, specific to them.


I know writers who get a lot of stories for fiction novels from newspaper accounts of real life stories.


I know writers who get story ideas while walking and looking at houses, imagining the families who live there.


I know writers who get ideas for fiction from reading others’ fiction, and imagining how much more they’d have done with those stories.



About a year ago, I realized many of my longer stories got their themes or protagonists from a friend of mine. One specific friend. We have our regular walk & talk, and I’d be telling her something I had experienced way back, when she’d say, “why don’t you write your next story about it?”


She is not a writer, but an excellent reader. I owe the last five MG novel themes to her.



11 comments:

  1. A thoughtful post, for sure. I do think that friends make such a difference in a writer's life. Both for encouragement and for inspiration. I agree, too, that different people get their story ideas or story characters from different sources. I have a writer friend who has become a successful mystery author, and he draws a lot of his material from cameo stories in the newspaper. I've never been able to do that, but I applaud his ability to do so.

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    1. Speaking of writing mysteries, my next door neighbor is working on a murder mystery, (for adults, mercifully) which she says is situated on our block presumably with all of us as characters. I can only hope I'm not the victim or the perpetrator ;)

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  2. This is so wonderful! I hope you will enjoy walking and talking with her a long, long time.

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    1. My friend is a great reader, (in addition to being a good listener) and I second and third your wish for our future.

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  3. What a wonderful way to get story ideas! I'm so glad you have your friend to encourage and inspire you.

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    1. And I'm glad I have a friend like you to be a beta reader of these stories, Ev.

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  4. Lucky you! So far, I haven't been inspired by my friends for source material, but it's a good idea.

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    1. All my friends inspire me in different ways. But this one friend has a great feel for what would make a good story.

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  5. The mystery I'm currently writing was inspired by a news story I saw over the summer. Ideas are everywhere.

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    1. Mysteries and crime stories are particularly suitable for inspiration right out of the news. Even nonfiction crime stories are now being written in a novelistic way. I know you have added mysteries for adults to your many writing genres, Kelly. May this be a good adventure.

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  6. Great to have a thoughtful walking buddy. Here's to many new ideas!

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