Friday, March 5, 2010

"Cynde's "New-Story-Idea" Folder!"

Last night, I was thinking about a couple of the little things that I do to organize myself and keep track of all the story ideas that I have floating around in my head, so I thought: "Hmmm...why not share the ideas with my friends? They might be able to use them!" goes:

  1. First of all, I never go anywhere without a notebook! You never know when a great idea is going to "pop!" into your head...and as quickly as it came, it can disappear. If you have your handy-dandy notebook with you, all you have to do is "jot" a rough draft of your idea down, and then you won't forget it.

  2. Secondly, I alway carry my digital camera with me. The reasoning behind this is pretty much the same as my first idea, but with some extra zip. You never know when you might come across the most amazing photo opportunity, which in turn could lead to a great publishable "story idea".

    (Tip: It is at this point that you would normally edit you work, but this is when you actually have some decisions to make:

    Do you want to work on coming up with a story that you might be able to publish? (That is entirely feasible. If the story is very good/great and the photo to go along with it is also great, then go for it!)

    Should you file the picture along with the "free-written" story, and wait for an opportunity when you can write a tailor-made story that will fit the request? (I have two folders: one on my computer & one in my desk, for just those type of stories. If they're in there too long, I pluck them out & work on them. Hopefully someday, I'll get lucky!)

  3. Next, when I get ready to go to sleep at night, I always make sure I have my notebook, a pen, and my mini-cassette recorder on the shelf next to my bed. That way, if I wake up from dreaming—because everybody knows that all the "great ideas" come to you in the middle of the night—I'll have a way to "record" them before they totally escape my mind.

    (Tip: At times like these, I have found that using the mini-cassette recorder saves a lot of time and aggravation because it takes a while for my eyes to focus properly after I've been asleep. So, if I whisper the idea into the recorder, I don't have to worry about turning the lights on and waking up my husband.)

  4. I have always loved going through photos and pictures, whether they be from magazines, the Internet, antique stores or even someone's photo albums. After selecting the ones I think are the best, I save them for "writing prompts". I study the photos and get the story pretty much worked out the way I want it in my mind, then set my trusty little timer for ten minutes. Then I "free write", which means I keep writing, non-stop, not worrying about punctuation or anything. Just words, and the story—whatever comes to mind—simply easy, free-flowing words.

    (Tip: The same "tips" that were used for my second idea, above, would apply here.)

  5. I have several other ideas, but I think I'll close with this last one, which I think is my favorite because it's fun (for me, anyway). Go to the mall, a restaurant, the library, or wherever there are people and it won't appear too strange if you're sitting around, watching and writing. I'm sure you've probably heard of this, or even done this before— my husband calls it "people watching" or "eye-balling". Pick out some people that you think are interesting or "catch your eye", then write a story about them. Write a whole background for each person, trying to pay particular attention to detail, as if you were a reporter. (It will help you in the future when you need to write decriptions.)

    (Tip: If I have found someone really interesting, I have gone up to them and asked them if I could take their photo and explained why. The only thing I have not done yet is found out where I can get one of those "release forms" that people are supposed to sign for that purpose.
    Does anyone know where I can get one of those "release forms"?

I hope you enjoyed my article today. If you have some ideas that you would like to share, please
"comment". Thank you so much for stopping by & please come back & visit again soon!

Until next time...stay safe, stay well, and may the Lord bless you all.


Please visit my other blogs:
Cynde's Daybook ~and~ Usurper Exposed. Thank you!


Angie said...

What great suggestions! I love the camera one. And I love going people-watching. You're so smart to keep a recorder by your bed.

Cynde L. Hammond said...

Thanks, Angie!

You always make me feel so good. You're a sweetheart.
God bless you.


Shayne said...

Hey Cynde,

I haven't seen you around much over on Think Sideways, so I thought I'd drop by and see if I could get in touch with you this way. :) I'm trying to get some action going in our workgroup, but haven't got any people chiming in on whether they like the idea or not yet.

How's things with you? Getting much writing done? And how's the course going?

Hopefully I'll see you around the forum soon. Take care.