My new source for writing inspiration… Pinterest!

I’ve been busily collecting prompts for inspiration during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) which will be starting November 1st.  Perhaps this won’t be a new idea for most out there, but I’ve recently discovered Pinterest as a source for those prompts.  Perhaps that’s because they reorganized it fairly recently and added the Quotes board, or perhaps I just didn’t notice that board before.  Either way, I’ve probably garnered enough prompts from it to keep me going for half the month.

For those who don’t know, Pinterest is an online bulletin board where the “Pins” are images, with a user written description below, that actually links to what the image is about.  People “pin” things to add to Pinterest and categorize them in their own boards so they are easy to find.  You can re-pin something someone else has pinned, or add your own.

The pinning process is very simple.  I added the pin link to my favorites and now when I see something on a web site that I want to pin, I simply click on favorites then click on the pin link and a box pops open which offers me a variety of images to use, from the page I’m on, and creates the link.  It works a little differently in other browsers, but equally simple.

My favorite categories are Animals, DIY & Crafts, Food & Drink, Gardening, Film Music & Books, Geek and Quotes.  The last three are the most useful to me for writing inspiration.  I’ve pinned quotes that made me think of characters, that illuminated character motivation or that inspired whole stories.

For example, I see a whole story in the quote, “The most painful goodbyes are the ones that are never said and never explained.”  Another pin showed a Christmas tree and written over it were the words, “when the tree is the only light in the room.”  Seeing and reading that created so strong a memory feeling in me that I thought it would be a great image to start a story with.  Where would it lead?

You can join Pinterest using your Facebook or Twitter accounts but you can also simply join using your email address now.  I highly recommend it for a variety of uses but be careful, it is just a bit addictive.  Enjoy!

The Moving Target

Why is it that our plans for writing so easily go astray?  The post before last I said that I was going to finish this novelization of Biomalware by October 25th to give to my writer’s group and let them read it and give me feedback.

I haven’t done it.  No, instead I’ve been watching Doctor Who and writing a sort of fan fiction based on some experiences I’ve had recently.  It’s been a pretty strange time, as I’ve previously recounted, and it turned into a weird little story.  I’ve finished it and now I’m thinking – what’s the point?  I’m not going to sell it that way.  I’ve written an interesting little anecdotal story and now I want to invest it with mean, or maybe I just need to discover the meaning in it, what it means to me Why did my brain come up with it?  I did find two of my favorite themes in it so I hope that helps bridge it.

I think fan fictions and dreams are interesting to ourselves but a lot of times they don’t stand on their own as a story.  It takes some work to turn them into a real and complete story of their own that doesn’t require a whole lot of back story.  I shared the story with my writer’s group last night and the reaction was lukewarm.  Maybe it was just my sleep deprivation interpreting their reactions but I was looking for at least one person to really LIKE it, even if they could see room for improvement, but I didn’t hear that in their responses.  I have to wonder if that isn’t because fan fiction just requires too much knowledge of the story world for it to make sense to the average reader.  I don’t know.  I’m going to move forward with their suggestions and hope it makes it more accessible for everyone.  They gave me some good info about what didn’t work for them so I hope I can bridge that gap.

I also still want to finish that novel for my writer’s group but I just don’t see it happening before the end of the month and November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) so I may be looking at the end of the year for that.  I want to finish it but I don’t want to rush it.  Maybe the ending will be part of my word count for NaNo.

I’m planning a NaNo that combines short stories, non-fiction and maybe poetry.  I seem to keep getting pulled back to science fiction.  I started thinking I should be writing in that vein because I love it, but I also love mysteries.  Then I looked at what I’ve been writing on and realized it pretty much is science fiction.  I’m sure both will show up in my Nano.

Right now, I’m preparing for NaNoWriMo by collecting inspiration and prompts.  I’m making lists of people I’ve wanted to base a character on, things that inspire me, topics I’m interested in and the like.  I once did a 2,000 word story a day for most of a month so that’s what I’m shooting for.  Of course, I was out of work and single at the time, but why let little things like a family and work stand in the way of a good NaNo?  It might just take a little time travel to get things done.  No problem.


Writing from the recesses of my brain

It’s funny how we can write something down, tuck it away then come back to it months later and not even remember writing it.  I have a habit of scribbling down little notes and bits of dialogue then tucking them in a pocket in my bag so that they won’t be lost to the recesses of my brain.  I just got a new tote bag and pulled all my notes out of the pocket of my old bag to reconsider.   Is it worth keeping or should I toss it?  A couple notes popped out at me as good prompts.  Feel free to see where they lead you. 

“Sins of omission, causing pain through what you fail to do.”

“Write the story you’d want to read.”

I’ve published several pieces on Yahoo! Voices in the past month or so, a couple new ones just this week.  There’s a little poem based on an image, a science fiction short story, another flash fiction based on the night the tornado hit, and more.  I keep hoping another will be featured as the little flash fiction was, but nothing so far.  They seem to be going through some changes just at the moment.  I’m still waiting to see how things shake out there.   

My goal in putting writing up there is two fold.  First, I would love to make some money off my writing.  (I half jokingly refer to it as my debt reduction plan.  Anything I make off my writing goes toward reducing my debt at the moment.)  Second, and perhaps most importantly, I am trying to bring my writing to the notice of those who might be out there perusing writers.  One of the short stories I published this week, Devolution, is a piece taken out of my science fiction novel in progress.  In a post pandemic world, Sarah and her brothers search for civilization. My pie-in-the-sky hope is that a publisher might happen upon the story and ask to see more of it.  At least it’s not hiding in a drawer somewhere.

Do you have something lurking in a drawer somewhere that deserves to see light?  Why not get it out and find a way to share it?

Uncertain Destinations

“Write about a journey with an uncertain destination.”  ~ The Pocket Muse 2 by Monica Wood

Ah, isn’t that love?  Hell… isn’t that life?  I walked into my office this morning and was shocked to find an incredible bouquet of six HUGE red roses with white baby’s breath, green ferns and dusty turquoise eucalyptus in a square vase.   It was a complete and total shock.  My brain went through several thoughts in quick succession.  Are these for me? What are they doing on my desk?  Who could they be from?  J___?  Dare I hope?  I had figured the guy I had fallen for just wasn’t the type for giving flowers and I like him too much to let that matter.  I pulled out the card and read the sweet words therein.  I knew I was a lucky woman but he keeps showing me how lucky I am.  From the beginning, I had determined not to worry about where this relationship would go and just enjoy the journey.  Every minute with him makes me happier than the one before.