Tuesday, July 16, 2013


Every book begins with an idea.  It may be a small one that grows the more you think about it, or it may be a big one that drops the entire story fully formed into your brain.

But where do those ideas come from?  What sparks your imagination to a point you're willing to invest months of time and sweat and blood and emotion into writing an entire book?

For me, ideas come from all over the place.  Books I read, movies I see, newspaper articles and more.  Sometimes in one week, I see or hear or come across two wildly different things that pique my interest, and somehow they become linked in my mind in some weird way that leads me to a story.

The story I'm writing at the moment came from one of those moments.  I read a newspaper article about   two girls on a basketball team and how their romantic relationship was being condemned and considered illegal because one of the girls was older than the other.  This kind of collided with another story idea that I've been toying with for a while, about someone who has been in a juvenile prison since they were just a child, and has now been released under a new name.

Something about the lesbian story bugged me, and I started wondering if maybe it was the younger girl who was driving things, not the older one.  And that's when the two ideas melted together in my mind.  My juvvie prison girl may be older in years, but she's completely lacking in any of the experiences most teens take for granted.  So what might happen if she comes into contact with a girl who is younger, but has already figured out exactly how the world works and how she can get what she wants out of it?

That's what I'm trying to figure out...

How do you get your ideas?  And where from?


  1. I'm more of a stand back and watch society as a social experiment type of writer. Sometimes I take a behavior that's usually thought of in a good way (or a bad way) and switch it around. I don't usually take ideas from headlines, but the reaction to the Zimmerman trial has me pretty interested about those who yell bias every time something doesn't go their way. I guess that's not so different from the idea you've had about your girl mc's. Good luck on that! :-)

  2. Most of my ideas are sparked from dreams. One gets in my head and I can't let it go until I've figured out everything about it. I like speculative fiction, so the crazier the better :)