This week, friend and fellow author Linda Lewis (AKA Catherine Howard) takes a moment of two to tell us about her latest book ‘The Writer’s Treasury of Ideas’. So what’s the book about Linda?
Basically the book is a kind of teach yourself guide how to think of ideas. The main section is arranged as an A – Z looking at the many and varied ways I use to conjure up ideas using a mixture of instruction, examples and exercises.
I was always being asked how I came up with ideas for my stories. At my peak I was writing two or three every week.
The book is for sale from my web site www.akacatherinehoward.weebly.com where it comes with a free mini guide to short story competitions, otherwise it’s on Amazon both as a paperback and as an ebook.
Here’s an Extract…
This method of generating ideas couldn’t be simpler. All you do is take a situation and ask, what if?
For a romance, try these. This one is for the ladies. What if Brad Pitt/George Clooney/Sean Connery came to your office, took one look at you, and fell head over heels in love? What if you were so attractive, men were always asking you to marry them?
And now for the men, what if your wife wasn’t there when you got home? How would you persuade her to come back to you?
For a ghost story, any of these might work. What if ghosts were everywhere and you were the only one who could see them? This idea was used to great effect in the film, The Sixth Sense. Or what if a ghost took up residence in your car/office/corner shop/pub?
For something more domestic you could try these. What if your child’s teacher was in a wheelchair? What if a stranger gave you a ten pound note? What if you fell apart at interviews?
What if can be applied to more or less anything you can think of. It’s especially good for science fiction or fantasy.
For example, you might ask these questions. What if you could fly? What if all the electricity in the world suddenly stopped working? What if you could read people’s minds? (As in What Women Want, starring Mel Gibson) What if you had to live the same day over and over and over again? (Bill Murray in the film Groundhog Day).
You can have enormous fun with what if, and if you keep asking questions, you will find that stories start to emerge with very little effort on your part.
Find out more about Linda, and her books, over at her blog.