Thursday, July 28, 2011

What if? - Sparking Ideas

The great thing for me about speculative fictions is that the possibilities are endless. The limit is only where your mind tells you to stop. As a writer, I have far too many ideas that will never come to fruition, simply because I don’t have the time. If we started to have 40 hour days, then I could make a dent in the virtual stack of ideas, but until then I will continue to fight off the need to start an new project before finishing my current WIP.

Since it is yard sale season right now, I have been stopping here and there to see what useless treasures I can find. Usually there are a bunch of books in a box for a quarter or some crappy kids toys that some child wants way too much for, or a box of trinkets that are either broken or from the 90’s – not a great decade for collectibles in my opinion. But then there is the prize, a little cup that looks so old and beat up that you are surprised it was never thrown out. What if you purchase the cup because it would look great on your antique side table and it turns out to be the holy grail? There is a story just waiting to be told.

At another yard sale, you buy some cheap looking water gun because your nephew would like it. What if it turns out to be some intergalactic ray gun that runs on the fear of the people around it? What if the little old lady at the yard sale is a spy and has been waiting for the gun to pick its new owner. You, as the new owner are bound to fight the forces of evil and have to try to instil fear in all those around you despite your bubblegum pink toenail polish and Minnie Mouse t-shirt. Your girl next door dimples don’t help either.

The possibilities are endless, you just have to open your mind to them.


Rosi said...

Thank you, Stacie. This is such a great post. I love the way you think. I've been a little stuck lately, but I can see I just need to spend a few days wandering through yard sales with some "what if" questions to find new ideas!

Melanie said...

I lovelovelove the What If? game. I love also it's cousin: What would happen if I put this with that? Or, But what if it doesn't?

The first one is good for putting together things that shouldn't go together, of course. Juxtaposing concepts or ideas. The second is also a way of getting through shadows. We can think of all the things that can go wrong. But what if they don't? Of course, when we create our stories and characters, this is what we are always asking. Boy Gets Intergalactic Heroine. But what if he doesn't? What if she isn't a heroine?

Lovelovelove the game!!

Stacie Carver said...

Thanks girls.
I can always find some neat thing if I just look around.

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