From Writer’s Block to Overflowing with Ideas

It would be nice if my brain would just balance out for a bit. Like… a week? No? We’re going to swing wildly across the creative spectrum in a matter of days?

Got it.

Through a (completely unintentional) process of reading a fairly wide range of short fantasy stories, reorganizing some of the sections in my draft, and outlining the next few chapters, I managed to collect enough creative juice to write a ton over the weekend for The Warden of Everfeld: Legacy.

And now I have too many ideas and I want to write ALL OF THEM!

I ended up writing/taking notes on a couple of random snippets of WoEL that I haven’t even gotten to yet — scenes that will come far down the line, narratively.

That hasn’t really happened since I first started thinking about Memento. I mean, before I even knew that that idea would turn into a full-fledged novel.

Then, I suddenly remembered the absolutely first story I ever thought to write in my fantasy universe. I don’t want to give away too much, but it’s a sort of travel diary written by a diplomat/scribe exploring Úr’Dan. I’m pretty sure I still have a paragraph somewhere on my flash drive of this character’s very first diary entry as he’s embarking on this journey.

I had set that idea aside years ago because I felt like it wasn’t ready for daylight. I probably won’t use that original diary entry, but now I really want to pursue the idea…

Then, just today, I thought it would be cool to write flash fiction of random characters I make up on the spot and just let them play in my universe.

I don’t have time for all these things! I need to focus on the actual novel I’ve been writing for months!

Finally, as luck would have it. Windows 10 did the first useful thing on my behalf when I didn’t ask or want it to, as usual. I provided me with this stunning picture on my welcome screen:

Padar Island, Indonesia

This setting must exist in my universe. It has black, white, and pink sand beaches. Yet another example of Windows 10 being anything more than a nuisance, for once. I don’t even know where this place would fit in yet, but it’s too beautiful and interesting to not be a fantasy setting. Truth is stranger than fiction.

And now it’s 11pm and I don’t have time to write any of these things. So, here’s what I will do instead of staying up all night writing, and I recommend you do the same if your brain is about to explode with ideas.

Stemming the Idea Flow

  1. Find a place — a notebook, a .txt file saved to your desktop — somewhere out of the way but not completely forgettable to jot down some things.
  2. Write down each and every idea you have, no matter how ludicrous, or far-fetched, or just plain weird. Write it down.
  3. Put that special ideas place away and don’t touch it unless: you have an idea, OR you’re actually ready to take one of those ideas and turn it into something.

Steve D

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