A writer, for all intents and purposes, is and must be a storyteller. I’ve had the great pleasure to have readers tell me that, while reading a novel, they often wonder how the author ever came up with such an idea for a book. To understand where those stories come from, one needs to know a little about the source.
To watch a writer, published or not, go about their daily business, working, tending to family matters, running errands, you wouldn’t see anything out of the ordinary. There is no sign with an arrow above their head saying “I’m a writer”, though I’m certain there are a few who wouldn’t mind such a display — they’re as normal as anyone else. Yet there is one decidedly different twist to them. It’s not something you can see, nor is it something you can touch and you will never know that distinction is there until you hold the pages of their book in your hands – it’s what is going on inside their minds. A writer can mentally multi-task, with the ability to stay focused on regular everyday things, as well as allow ideas to flow while doing it.
Extravagant, earth-shaking confrontations are not the norm to produce an idea for a writer. No, it’s mostly the world around them, maybe an encounter with a stranger who reveals a goofy quirk or a shift in the atmospheric barometer — okay, maybe not that – or perhaps seeing the tender moment between two people. Ideas come from everywhere, but it is usually the simplest things the writer takes and brings to life, building places, times, cities, and most of all the beloved characters, developing them as each word is written – unfolding the story so as to take you on a journey.
So if you’re one of those readers who often wonder where the ideas come from, remember while you’re out, you may be in the presence of a writer and you’ll never know if something you do or say will inspire a novel.