by Peggy Bechko
We all need ‘em, right? Writers are always open to and searching for ideas.
And they pop up everywhere – or at times, nowhere (the bane of a writer’s existence)
For me it’s not uncommon for an idea for writing the newest story to crop up when I’m reading the newspaper, watching some ‘out there’ show on aliens, maybe when I’m traveling or just taking a long bath.
Conferences can be another great resource for writers. Chatting with like-minded folks who write and create and the ideas just seem to flow with a back and forth, read to give birth to a fantastic idea (or many of them) to be written into exciting scripts, novels, short stories and even creative copywriting. Enthusiastic and creative people can spark like crazy.
These days technology plays a big role in drawing down an idea a writer could put to use. New discoveries happen every day, new technologies are being developed and writers watch in eager anticipation of what they might put to use next. Boring isn’t even part of the equation.
A woman crossing a street while texting is slammed by a van – she’s catapulted into another dimension instead of being killed (whohoo, string theory!). Is she solid on the other side? Can they (whoever ‘they’ are) see her? If she can get back will she be dead since her body was slammed? Cool, huh?
But, as with all ideas, it falls to the writer to create a world and the people in it so that they are believable. As a writer of scripts or novels it’s imperative that the new world doesn’t come off like some kind of , “wow, isn’t that amazing” type of world or it will probably turn off readers in every genre.
Characters have to be those who remain in readers (and movie watchers as well as script readers) long after the writing has been read. Throughout a story a character needs to change and evolve and the audience needs to see it happen. Writers owe it to their audience to do that. A story doesn’t move forward well when everything is left to the end.
Seriously, writers, in order to create the necessary tension from the first page of script or novel need to begin in the midst of chaos. It’s everything that swirls around the chaos (whatever kind it is – mental, external, something else) which captures the reader (or audience) immediately and causes them to engage with the protagonist’s struggles. The failures, the obstacles to be overcome, the adapting to circumstance to push on.
Take that fantastic idea that occurs to your writing self and slam it around. The idea of the woman texting above. What if the dimension she’s been thrown into exists, but only because she was thrown into it. Maybe the phone she’d been texting on still works and she can text with the dimension she’s left even from there.
The general world of the writer is to create a new idea, twist it, let it find its new track, then twist it again. In the long run this method of writing will create memorable characters who live in worlds that can’t be forgotten.
Writer? Then try creating and twisting until the story you’ve written becomes a smooth and wonderous world; stunning and unforgettable.
Peggy Bechko is a TVWriter™ Contributing Editor. blog. Learn more about her HERE. Peggy’s new comic series, Planet of the Eggs, written and illustrated with Charlene Brash-Sorensen is available on Kindle. And, while you’re at it, visit the Planet of the Eggs Facebook page and her terrific blog.