When Ideas Strike at Inconvenient Times.

One of the most annoying things for a writer is when an idea strikes at an inconvenient time. This happened to me today and it made me so frustrated. In an ideal world, when an idea strikes, we writers would be able to stop whatever we are doing and start plotting the idea that has struck us, but the world is not ideal and ideas just love to strike when you are least prepared for them. Like today.
I was busy getting ready to go out when a really great sentence came to me. I jotted it down quickly, but then another came, and another and suddenly the plot played out before my eyes and I had a beginning and some middle and the end. And I wanted to plot it all out while it was fresh, but I couldn’t, I was already running late. I just had to hold onto it, play it over and over in my head hoping not to loose any of it, and, because I was busy when I got home, too, spoke the idea into the recorder on my phone. (Much quicker than typing, which I can do later when I’m not so busy.)
But this little idea was inconvenient in more ways than one. It is one idea in a very long list of ideas for stories I want to write. It is very crowded up in that head of mine, and all my characters have such loud voices. (I assure you I’m not crazy, just a writer.)
Sometimes it feels like I don’t want to write anything because I want to write everything.
I groaned when I got this idea because I just don’t need another story idea right now, but my frustration was quickly replaced by excitement because the idea was so good that I feel blessed that it came to me. (It is for a contemporary romance in case you’re wondering.)
Anyway, ideas striking at inconvenient times is just part of life as a writer, frustrating, yes, but better than having no ideas at all.

What about you, have you had some badly timed ideas lately?

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8 thoughts on “When Ideas Strike at Inconvenient Times.

  1. Great post! I agree that inconvenience definitely outweighs no ideas at all!!!

    A couple of times when out walking I’ve had a good idea. I keep thinking about it (virtually sprinting home) till I get home so I can jot it down. I’ve learnt that if I don’t write it down straight away, I’ll forget it.

  2. Elizabeth Gilbert mentions a poet in her TED talk, who would work in the fields when she was younger and when an idea would start coming to her, she’d feel it and hear it thundering across the landscape. She would drop what she was doing and race to the house to get to a pen and paper. If she didn’t get there in time before it moved through her, she lost it. I loved the image of a person running to get her inspiration down before it whooshed through her and away, gone if she didn’t make it in time.

  3. I always get an idea in bed, but not right away when I still have time to get up and jot them down in a book, it’s when I’ve been laying there for half an hour or so and am gettin sleepy and the whole house is asleep making getting up impossible without wakening everyone up, only 1/5 ideas will be remembered and I agree, it is frustrating! 😦

    1. I have had ideas come to me heaps of times in bed. You could keep a notepad and pen beside your bed, or even type the idea into your phone. I’ve been using my phone a lot lately to help capture ideas on the run 🙂

      1. The later it gets the more creative I get haha, that’s a good idea! I’m going to do that in the future so thanks, hopefully my ideas don’t disappear now that I have a solution 🙂

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