And Now I’m Stuck…

Don’t know what to do next? Brain in a funk and not really working? Then take a break. Step back from everything and give yourself a day or two, maybe more, to rest. It doesn’t all have to be done here and now. Sometimes when our brains stop working they’re flat out telling us they just need a break. And then you look at your papers again. Look and see what you have and where you are. You’d be surprised how much creativity and inspiration you can get just by taking a break and then looking at it again.

Random Late Night Inspiration

  • The doorbell echoed throughout the usually quiet house. I peered out the front windows, but all I could see was the dark figure of a boy. Mom always said to never answer the door when it was a stranger… But my curiosity won out. Maybe it would be Philip finally coming to work on the science project that was due in three days. I slowly opened the door and…
  • It was him again. She would have recognized him anywhere now, especially after what he had done… The question was: what did he want this time?
  • I watched as the moon slowly turned from its usual milky white to a light bluish color. And I seemed to be the only one surprised by it…
  • Being absolutely terrible with any sort of human interaction, he shoved the flowers in her face silently, unsure of how else to present them. She looked surprised and even weirded out. He silently cursed himself. He knew this would never work. He had always known, but he couldn’t help but try, despite everything inside of him that told him not to. And then there was a glimmer of hope. She took the flowers, a slight blush beginning to show on her cheeks.
  • I hated it. I hated it all so much. Again and again and again it went in a never-ending vicious cycle. One of these days it was going to kill me, I could only hope that day would be very soon…
  • “Well… Um… Hm… Maybe… Maybe if you close one eye it’ll look different…? Or turn sideways…?”   “You disintegrated it completely! It’s a pile of ash, you idiot! It looks the same from every angle!”
  • Five guys, four seconds, three knives, two cameras, and one me… This should be fun…
  • And there they were again, the same as always. One would be carrying the bag and the other would be scoping out the street. They were so obvious it was painful… But even more painful was the excruciating fact that the police hadn’t even caught them yet… Perhaps they just needed a little help…
  • “Four?”   “Four.”   “Four?”   “Yes, four. That’s what I said.”   “B-but… four?”  “Yes!”   “Oh… Are you sure it wasn’t three?”   “It was four.”   “Four?”   “I’m going to kill you one of these days and make it look like an accident…”
  • The song was so soothing… So familiar… Comforting… And yet so sinister. It was no wonder I turned out like this. I began to wonder what he would think… Would he like me? He should. I was just like him after all. But maybe that would be why he would rather hate me more than anyone else… Might turn into a fun game of who-can-kill-the-other-first. Crazy versus crazy… The city wouldn’t even stand a chance.

Can you turn these into stories? Let me know! If anyone does, I’d like to hear what you came up with.

Am I a Writer?

Sometimes I’ll look back over my writing and think, “Hm. Not too shabby.” Other times I’ll be like: “What the heck is wrong with me? How can I even call myself a writer when all I do is produce this worthless junk?” Sometimes I’ll even look over my previous posts and wonder why in the world anyone would ever want to read anything I have to say.

So am I a writer?

It’s usually only when we start to struggle that we begin to doubt ourselves, to question our abilities. Are we writers only when we have good days? Are we writers only when a small piece of our work stands up to our critical eye and harsh editing? Are we writers only when someone else says we are?

No, we’re writers when we choose to be. If you write and you love it and you can’t imagine life without, then you are a writer. You can choose to be a writer or you can choose to always doubt yourself. We should not base our “writer status” on our work or our feedback. Sure, both are important but sometimes we can be a bit too critical of ourselves.

You are who you choose to be.

So. Want to be a writer? Good. Then go write and be one.

Something Important to Remember When Writing…

A lot of people, even myself at times, forget about these important little things. Our senses. Writing becomes more alive when you incorporate as many senses into a scene as possible. Take this for example:

The room was dark and scary and cold. She shivered in fear as she made her way across the room. Then the door suddenly shut on its own…

Now:

She couldn’t see. Darkness overtook everything, allowing no light to seep in through the broken wood paneling she knew was over the window. A shiver racked through her body as she fumbled her way across the room, her hand drifting along the grooved brick wall, ice cold to the touch. Then there was a low humming that began where she had just come from and the door creaked shut.

Better? By engaging the reader’s senses they become even more lost in your book and everything that’s going on. With each scene you write make sure you practice putting in as many senses as you can cram in. It’ll be worth it in the long run.

Creating Characters

http://www.justinmclachlan.com/787/25-things-creating-characters/
http://lauralee1.blogspot.com/2014/03/ultimate-character-questionnaire.html?m=1

http://writerswrite.co.za/15-questions-authors-should-ask-characters

http://mandywallace.com/the-character-most-writers-get-wrong/

http://www.shesnovel.com/how-to-choose-a-main-character-that-will-rock-your-readers-world-plus-a-super-secret-e-kit-coupon/

http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/5-moral-dilemmas-that-make-characters-stories-better

http://emilyjeanroche.blogspot.co.nz/2013/07/crafting-memorable-characters.html?m=1

http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/8-%c2%bd-character-archetypes-writing/

http://www.raeelliottbooks.com/

http://mysterywritingismurder.blogspot.com/2013/03/stressed-out-characters-just-way-we.html?m=1

These are all great articles on creating characters, and although there’s quiet a few here I would strongly recommend you read them all. But in the end you have to always remember to do what works best for you.

Inspiration and Getting Started Articles

http://mandywallace.com/where-to-find-story-ideas/
http://jnkhoury.blogspot.com/2013/03/on-inspiration-how-to-find-your-story.html?m=1

In the following article there are some things I agree with and others I don’t, but it’s a start for choosing a title. But in the end, choose what stands out to you and what you feel is the right one.

http://lauralee1.blogspot.com/2014/01/naming-your-novel.html?m=1

http://www.justinmclachlan.com/1658/25-things-creating-stories/

http://goteenwriters.blogspot.com/2014/07/how-to-develop-your-story-idea-into.html?m=1

http://jamigold.com/2014/07/building-a-character-arc-start-at-the-end/
Don’t worry, there will be tons more articles to come on a wide range of topics.

Where to Start?

Got an idea? Good. Write it down. Write down every possible detail you have for this idea. Just have a sentence or less? That’s perfectly fine. It’s a start. Now depending on what you have written down, this next step might vary a bit for you. Do you have a character idea? Sketch them out! Bring them to life! Have an idea for a plot? Do the same thing; start sketching it out. Have a title idea? Start brainstorming some basic plot ideas that would fit under that title.

It doesn’t matter what you start with, it only matters what you do with it. Don’t feel disappointed, don’t feel defeated; everything will come together in time.