In Others’ Words: Whatcha’ Thinking?

Power of idea quote Hugo 2014

As a writer, I embrace the power of ideas.

I know how a story idea can be the merest “what if?” nudgng me to think, to turn the question over … and for weeks, it’s nothing more than a maybe … a perhaps … a possibility.

And then, the story comes to life. Imaginary people are talking all at once, demanding that I pay attention to them, their stories intersecting with one another, demanding to be told, to be put down on paper.

There is power in story.

Think of the times you’ve opened the cover of a book, read the words “Chapter One” … and lost yourself in between the pages — the real world fading away until you reach “The End” — if that’s not power, I don’t know what else to call it.

I’ve had the oh-so-intense pleasure of sitting with other writers, tossing ideas back and forth, watching the glint of “maybe” light up their eyes. It’s magical. Absolutely magical. Why? Because we believe that anything … anything can come true.

Ah, the power of an idea whose time has come …

So tell me, what are you thinking about?

In Your Words: When has the power of an idea overtaken you? What are you thinking about, mulling over? Has the time come for that idea? What’s holding you back?

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  1. May 9, 2014, 7:05 am   /  Reply

    Hugo’s quote reminded me of something.

    Do you know the best way to breach concertina wire, if you don’t have bangalores?

    One guy throws himself across the wire, as a living steppingstone. Rather painful, but necessary.

    Point being, an idea whose time has come gets its chance to fly from a foundation built up by many others. If you look at the enormous success that Andrew Greeley had in the 80s and 90s…he was able to tap into the deeply spiritual bent that writers were exploring in the late 60s and 70s, but that never quite ‘worked’.

    Greeley saw that the spiritual stuff needed to be tied together and constrained within the framework of a creed , but without the rejection of the physical that was commonly associated with ‘preaching’.

    The ground was ready – the seed was planted – he watered it, and nurtured it as it grew.

    What am I thinking about? I try not to think too much. Strains the brain, and makes hair turn gray.

    • May 9, 2014, 3:06 pm   /  Reply

      You can’t fool me, Andrew. You’re thinking all the time.
      All. The. Time.

  2. May 9, 2014, 8:21 am   /  Reply

    The power of an idea overtook me four years ago. This crazy story idea popped into my mind and wouldn’t leave me alone. I talked with a certain friend about it. And she encouraged me to write it. I don’t know if it will ever see the light of day, but that story opened a new door in my life that I had kept tightly closed.

    I love listening to ideas flow when writers talk story, and you are a great brainstormer, Beth. 🙂

    • May 9, 2014, 3:07 pm   /  Reply

      Ah, the power of ideas … and the way they overtake us.
      And you, my friend, are a writer.
      How fun is that?
      Quite fun … because now we talk story together! 🙂

  3. May 9, 2014, 9:11 am   /  Reply

    I love it when I’m writing and a character takes the book in a different direction. Yes, it is magical! And makes the writing oh so fun!

    • May 9, 2014, 3:08 pm   /  Reply

      I’m reading your novel now, Pat, and I’m wondering: How did she come up with that? Where’s she going with this? What’s happening next? Oh, seeing the magic from this side … and not knowing all the answers …

  4. May 9, 2014, 12:09 pm   /  Reply

    I love it when the glint for me to step aside from my beloved Women’s Fiction books for now, and focus on my historical romance instead–and I’m thankful for where I was when that happened . . .

    • May 9, 2014, 3:10 pm   /  Reply

      I’ve been redirected quite a few times in my life, Dee.
      Somtimes I’ve resisted, but then I’ve realized that the new direction is the right way … and a lot of wonderful things (and people) are waiting for me along the uncharted path.

  5. Susan
    May 9, 2014, 3:00 pm   /  Reply

    I’m in that “what if” right now too:) An idea that popped in my mind that started spinning as a new story takes birth. Love this part of the process where anything seems possible!

    • May 9, 2014, 3:11 pm   /  Reply

      Anything IS possible, Susan. Anything is possible.

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