While I was travelling, little did I realise but I was gathering ideas.
When I was at uni studying performance, a teacher once mentioned the importance of writing all of your ideas down, so that when you were dry or empty you could pull out your little book of ideas and start working on something.
I understood it in a performance context. I have notebooks with scribbles and costume ideas, staging directions, lines, pieces of dialogue, research – but what I have more of, are notebooks (and computer documents) full of snippets and snatches of prose – the writing equivalent of my performance ideas.
I’ve been a bit stumped by some of these. They came out as fragments and then petered out. I thought they were dead ends, or else I didn’t know how to write a story anymore, but actually, they’re ideas, and they’re brewing.
My fellow writer from the other day bemoaned the lack of time for daydreaming, or forming out ideas, when one snatches 10 minutes writing time here and there. And some stories just take time to form.
When I think back over the stories that have come out in one go, the ones that were born if not fully formed then at least with all the parts intact (can a novel be like that?) – the kernel of the story actually came from a long time prior; an image or an idea or a snippet from a time long ago made its way in to the story and ended up being the driving force of the whole thing. And that’s what these fragments all hold – kernels of driving force!
One idea that I wrote down last year was actually structural. I started to develop the notion of creating a collection of stories, and I had the sense to write down a modus operandi view of how I wanted to create those stories to fit within my inspired structure.
I was mooching through some of those idea files tonight and found this m.o. and click! -something snapped into place.
On the floor around me now are about 6 fragments/ideas that I’ve printed out that fit into the metastructural idea of the collection. There are other fragments/ideas that need to exist yet that I still want to add to it.
This makes planning my goals a little easier and clearer. I see a direction for where to start my website and domain name, with a saleable work that I can direct into it.