- Guest Post by Maggie Thom
Inside the mind of an author… who dares to go there? It’s mysterious, it’s swarming with ideas, it’s overwhelming, it’s fun, it’s silly, off the wall, out there, dark, wild and wacky, searching, seeking, loving, giving, living in a dream world that is magical, mystical and fun. But it is rarely boring.
I can’t speak for all authors but I can speak for me, my mind is often very busy. Sometimes it is fun and whimsical, I’ll see something or hear something and then play with it. Put it in an impossible situation. For example I can be watching a butterfly flitting around and wonder what would happen if it lived in a land where they were the rulers. What would that look like? What kind of issues would they have in their world? And I keep adding in things and taking away others to see where it would go. Is there an idea there that I can develop into something intriguing, interesting and believable. Sometimes it is weird and whacky. I may wonder what it would be like to go to school with an elephant. And then what if that elephant had fire breathing skills from his trunk. How would he control it? What problems would arise for him?
I love to look at situations and change them, explore what is possible. I think that as a writer I’m always looking to stretch reality, find the absurd, the impossible to see if it is something I can make possible. At other times I am trying to explore human resiliency, how far can people be pushed before they react and how would they react. How would they handle difficult situations? What would they do? And how would they do it? Sometimes I am looking for answers or just plain curious. So, if I wonder what something would be like to do or how would I handle it if it happened in my life, I write a story that will cover that kind of situation.
The ideas are always there, sometimes I am searching for them and at other times they just come to me at the oddest time. I can be doing dishes, driving, hiking in nature, sleeping, watching a show, reading a book, doing almost anything when ideas will come to me. I then play the ‘what if’ and see where I can go with my snippet of my idea.
In fact sometimes when I want the ideas to be flowing they aren’t there. Something I’ve learned though is the more I push, the less they come. So when I’m struggling with where to go with some story, I often walk away and do something unrelated. I leave the story behind and make a conscious effort not to think about it for a while. Then when I do come back to it, I’ll just let my mind play with ideas until I have the flow and then I’ll start grabbing that which I think fits and see where it goes.
Surprisingly enough there are quiet times too. I can shut off my thoughts and just be, so it isn’t noisy and busy all the time.
I think inside the mind of a writer is a pretty cool place to hang out. You just never know what villainous creatures or daring adventures or compelling characters just might show up.
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Genre – Suspense
Rating – PG13
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