1. Tall and Weird
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    Tall and Weird New Member

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    Confused by ideas!

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Tall and Weird, Apr 13, 2009.

    I have a problem with ideas.

    Not, as you might expect, a lack of them but more that they find me at short and random intervals.

    Where's the problem? you may ask, a write without ideas is a gymnast without a sense of balance. The truth is that I am already a bit of a procrastinator and these ideas are often not anything to do with the project I am working on. They distract me.

    I know that any idea is, if not useful, then at least worth writing down but I have boxes full of disconnected ideas scribbled onto scraps of paper and a great bunch of files each with two or three lines of possibly interestng yet again disconnected scenes.

    I suppose my question is this - do you have any hints on how to focus my disjointed creativity?
     
  2. BillyxRansom
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    BillyxRansom Active Member

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    Turn each one into its own story, OR if two or more can feasibly be fused into one, then do so. But just pay attention.



    Jesus, I need to take my own damn advice. :rolleyes:
     
  3. Dalouise
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    Dalouise Contributing Member

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    I find that my ideas develop as I write. I do start with a rough outline though - a title, start and end. the middle bit needs the most inspiration! I found that NaNo helped enormously in forcing me to just get on with it and I had 58k of not-too-bad material at the end of it. Sure, I've developed some parts since and dropped others, but the editing process was straightforward as I had plenty of material to work on.
    Everyone's different, but the key message I keep picking up and listening to, is to write and keep writing. Notes on bits of paper are simply that and whilst they have their place for many people, there's no substitute for actually bashing out thousands of words. If I get stuck on what happens next, I write whole chapters out of order for example if there is to be a HEA, the two must meet at some point so I get that down if it is clear in my mind then slot it in later when its position in the tale becomes clearer.
    Hope that helps. ;)
    Oh, almost forgot - I thought I had several novels in terms of ideas and guess what, they all got sucked into the one, and I still needed more. :redface:
     
  4. OneMoreNameless
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    OneMoreNameless Contributing Member

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    Next time you start a project, just take handful of your previous ideas and try to incorporate as many of them into what you're doing (you might need to interpret loosely some of them, but it should be easy enough if you focus on what particular element made it worth recording) - having a large collection of arbitrary ideas will help with writer's block, and you might find your works ending up much richer and detailed as a result.
     
  5. pacmansays
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    pacmansays Senior Member

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    Sometimes I change the format, so I will make it a poem instead of a story which is quicker to make and so doesn't distract me as much

    I also number my favourite ideas in the order of how i should do them. I focus on one but keep contributing to other ideas at the same time
     
  6. Tall and Weird
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    Tall and Weird New Member

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    Thanks for the replies everyone!

    I have just bought a new desk and have spent a pleasantly futile couple of hours sorting out many of my notes into a collapsible file which now weighs ten times as much when it was empty.

    I think I need to stress that I am pretty weird. Some of the ideas were freaky weird.

    And, I've written a heck of a lot more poems than I had thought.
     
  7. Gone Wishing
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    Gone Wishing Contributing Member

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    I do the same thing, I'm not bothered by it though - it's actually a method that I use to my own advantage.

    I just moved house, and in the process discovered about six large boxes worth of scribbled ideas, some of which are just one or two sentences and no longer even make sense to me.

    It's really quite awesome. :)

    Usually, I will write about an idea for as long as I am inspired by it. If my inspiration wanes, the idea gets boxed. When I've run out of fuel for my current projects, however, I'll pull out a box and just start reading randomly. Inevitably, an idea or two from there will kick-start either something new, or I'll continue with something long-abandoned.

    The way I look at it is these things don't have to be a distraction - I find things distract me only if they feel unfinished, which means I still have something to say about them... If I am done for the time being, we both shut-up, so to speak.

    If there is a genuine sense of cohesion through all of the work that you have, then by all means piece them together, but don't force it. Sometimes the entire story takes a little while to announce itself, but the more work you have, I'd say the easier it will be to see which pieces belong where.
     
  8. lynneandlynn
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    lynneandlynn Contributing Member

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    I try to work on two things at one time so that I have a main focus and a secondary one for when I can't stand to work on the main one due to frustration, stress, etc. I find that it helps keep me from losing all interest in my first piece and allows me to develop another idea at the same time. I don't know if this helps at all, but I thought I'd share on the off-chance that it might.

    ~Lynn
     
  9. sprirj
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    sprirj Contributing Member

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    I keep a note book with me all the time and write down every single idea I have. I also keep a very basic chapter outline, of what happens in my book. I then review my notes and see if anything can be used to give my story more depth, this may require some further research on google, or as in a current example, I have switched the sex of 2 characters from male to female.
     

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