I am not one of those lucky people who has tons of story ideas constantly jumping into her head, rounded out and fully formed. In fact, I kind of hate those people. It takes me eons of pondering and mulling and brainstorming to build a story from from the ground up, usually beginning with a vague idea for a character who refuses to leave me alone. While setting and voice and romance come easy to me, it is always such a challenge to nail down goal, conflict, and motivation (the bread and butter of character-driven fiction), not to mention an actual plot with a beginning, middle, and end — a plot with ups and downs during which the protagonist makes decisions and things actually happen.
So, imagine my surprise when, just last week, I was driving down the road, rockin’ out to some Tim McGraw, when the chorus of a particularly angsty tune hit me hard. This song, its lyrics, its emotion… It was a novel waiting to happen. In fact, with a bit of tweaking and some serious creative license, it was a contemporary young adult romance novel waiting to happen. How perfect, because that happens to be what I like to write! Just like that, a whole story — characters and setting, GMC, inciting incident and climax and resolution — played out in my head like a movie, and it was glorious! I almost drove off the road in my hurry to get home and jot down notes.
Guys. I am so writing this story. I haven’t been this excited about a Shiny New Idea in ages. I’m going to put my rewrite on the back burner for a few weeks and focus solely on this new project because oh my gosh… It is just so inspiring! I started plotting yesterday (my first time plotting a brand new project with Scrivener — yay!) and I’m already completely immersed in these characters and their story.
Just for fun, here’s a sample plot point: Jenna’s first kiss with Tyler. She is bashful and has all the butterflies and he is swoony and awesome and way too good at kissing. At this point, we need to fall in love with them both so we don’t totally hate them for being crazy jerks later.
I’m giddy with the potential of this story! And now, back to work…
How do story ideas come to you? What inspired your current WiP?