Tuesday, March 12, 2013

So, I've This Idea For A Book...Wait, Come Back!

I don't have a problem with sharing ideas for a book. I have many, many ideas. Sadly, should anyone be listening to me, those ideas sound like a hot stew of verbal vomit ... or like a normal conversation with a five-year old.

I have a hard time stringing together complete sentences when I speak because my brain is already six incomplete conversations ahead. If you want to play "guess that story" with me, you have to be a Level 12 Champion of Mental Hopscotch ... or just drink a lot of scotch. That's helpful in most interactions with me.

Why don't I really care about sharing ideas? Less than .02% will actually end up a as complete novel. There may be a horde of Chapter Ones running amok, but 100k novels are far fewer.

Guys, guys, guys, I love brainstorming. It's like crack for the imagination. I love throwing out what-ifs and then-whats. The best part of writing fiction is that -- in the idea stage -- there is nothing too absurd. Cyborg werewolves nesting inside the unfinished pyramids at Giza? YAY! What if those weres are hunting the bucktoothed pharaoh to stop him from dredging the Nile and angering the Nyads from planet Zork? What if one of the weres is a Mr. Darcy-esq sort of dude? Do cravats last around mechanical necks or does they start all pristine and white then in like, an hour, devolve into utter shreds? Does he use the tatters as floss after a kill? What if one of those tatters ends up being the Shroud of Turin?

The most useful thing about slinging ideas is that it pushes me to be twice as creative when I actually jot down the meaty bits of the main plot. Now, do I discuss a book as I'm writing it? Sometimes it'd be nice to, but then I'd have to explain the characters and where they're going and what's already happened and why... and I've already mentioned my inability to verbally complete a thought, right?  Right.

Do I feel talking about a story before I write it makes it lose its creative lure? Nah.  Do I find it helpful? Sometimes. Do I find it fun? Depending on who's playing hopscotch with me... you betcha.

If you were to discuss a book before you wrote it, what sort of qualities would you want in the people with whom you're speaking? Best-Selling Authors? Wackadoodles? Marketing Gurus? Sociopaths? Five Year Olds? Whiskey-Soaked Curmudgeons?  Go on, share your ideal brainstorming party participants.


  1. KAK- that commercial cracked me up!
    I would talk book with any of the cast of characters you mentioned. I've been without a CP partner for a while. Maybe I should run an ad... something like : "Author seeks someone to listen intently, nod encouragingly often, ask insightful questions from time to time, and offer sound plotting feedback. Must share your chocolate."

    1. LOL, Linda, the first time I caught that commercial I rewatched it six times!

      As for the CP partner thing, I was totes tempted to apply until you said I had to share the chocolate. ~huddles around the precious~

  2. These days I'm far likelier to share than I used to be. I suspect mostly I was afraid I'd jinx the whole affair. Now i willingly acknowledge that at least some of my success has less to do with luck and more to do with-gasp-hard work.

    1. Oh, the toils of having to link Awesome Event A to Tragic Event C! Writing would be so much easier if we didn't have to fill in the gaps. ~shakes fist at sky~

  3. Ha! That commercial was brilliant. Clearly, she's destined to become an author when she grows up.