Every author out there knows showers and baths can be our greatest source of inspiration for new ideas or plot fixes. However, they don’t always comply with the stories we want the idea or fix for. Why you ask? Simple. Because that would be too easy.
The other day as I was trying to figure out why I was staring through a keyhole at the White Rabbit for my Shard I was completely out of inspiration other than associating it with Alice in Wonderland. Naturally – while I was trying to determine the opposite of wonder – I told my friends I was going to go chase the rabbit down the drainpipe and see where it lead me.
A half hour later of shower pondering and EUREKA!
I had inspiration!
For the Wrong. Damn. Story.
I eventually figured out where the rabbit was leading me by the end of the shower, but the White Rabbit was not the plotline my brain original solved. No. Not even close. Instead, my mind decided to wander down a different path and throw me a possible solution to my epilogue issue for Fated to Darkness. I mean, I’m not totally sold that it will work yet, and it definitely needs some playing around with to make it work, but…it might work, and still allow me to use the epilogue how I wished to without hinting a major spoiler. Either way, I’m going to be playing carefully with words and description when I write this epilogue.
More than likely it’s still going to give me a headache no matter what.
But this eureka moment is a good start!
You know what else every author out there knows? That you can never have too many plot bunnies. Never ever. And that we need to invent immortality to write them all, but even then we’d never write them all because they would. Just. Keep. Coming.
Unfortunately, a cure to mortality has not yet been found.
But when I say they just keep coming, I mean that they literally never stop. In the midst of chasing the White Rabbit down my drainpipe and then writing the Shard, the whole thing suddenly took off with a full storyline and complete conflict and even a half spurted scene in my head and then, and then…!
Then guess who had another full on novel idea?
Just another novel screaming for attention now. A darkened, twisted, slightly altered version of Alice in Wonderland. All from a single picture. All from a Wednesday Word prompt. All from a simple, seemingly harmless Shard.
It’s not harmless anymore.
Alice in Wonderland has now become Alice in Court, and Alice is demanding her twisted version of the story be written before she decides to checkmate me instead of the Black Queen. (It makes sense in my head, I swear.) What makes this storyline even better is that a friend told me the copyrights to Disney for that story and characters are long past, which means I could still use the same names and all. Granted, I might change the name of Wonderland for the realm. I’m thinking something like Dreadland, but I need to play with it because the whole storyline evolves around a game of human chess, in a twisted way.
It’s amazing in my head right now. I was grinning from ear to ear for a good long while after writing the Shard.
If I’m keeping score too, this is probably about the sixth or seventh Shard screaming at me to become way more than flash fiction piece. (I’m blaming you, P.T.) Let’s count them all, shall we?
Starting from the beginning of my Shards, first there was Accident Twin that’s been vying for a plotline for awhile now. Originally it was sparked from a conversation with a friend. Then there’s One Little Secret that was originally sparked years ago by a simple phrase. After that came Embermyst, which most of my followers should know I did finish as a short story and got it published with Victory Tales Press last October. Mercy Me started to really nag at me too for it’s own storyline in at least a short story of some sort, so did Dead Souls Walking. After that Clockwork Heart reared its head, and that one is becoming either a short story or a novella, probably a novella. It’s also partly what I’ll be working on next month for Camp. Traitor is trying for its own novel, and one day probably will be its own because it involves a huge secondary – partly another main – character of Fated to Darkness. It would be a prequel kind of novel. Then there’s Betrayal in Duty, which is still trying rather hard to spark something more then the general idea I have already, but hasn’t gotten any further than the Shard yet. Dragonstone was rearing its head pretty damn hard, and really making me want to write a dragon/elf/leprechaun cross fantasy story. Last of all is Alice in Court now with a full on novel idea.
Ten. That’s ten Shards trying very hard to become something more than a Shard.
I’m going to need a lot more NaNo’s to write all of these, along with all the other novel ideas and half finished or partly started novels I already have, plus all the other ones planned in my head involving series or standalones or… UGH. I need to become immortal.
When is too many plot bunnies too many again?
Oh, right, never they say.
Well, at least two of them will be worked on in April. One of which will finally be finished!
Maybe I need to stop writing flash fiction so I stop sparking so many ideas.
Nah! Why would I do that when they’re fun and a good exercise for writing? Besides, I’m on my fourth week in a row with a place in the #ThursThreads challenge hosted by a fellow Snippeteer author! I got an honorable mention again this week! The best part about this week’s mention is it’s the 5th anniversary of the challenge which means there were prizes! Woooohooooo!
(I will share my honorable mention tale at the end of this post.)
Now, moving on a bit since it IS the eve of first Camp NaNoWriMo of 2017…
There’s a half hour left until the plunge into madness of Camp NaNo begins for me and my normal excitement for the challenge is revving its engine full strength! (I mean, that could also be attributed to the fact I’ve had a Monster coffee, but…) I can’t wait for it to start, because my first order of business is finishing Fated to Darkness! And I’ve got the first four days of April off to write like crazy! (Thank the Gods too because everything has gone to hell the past two days. I need a vacation, badly. I need a campfire and alcohol is more like it.)
Who else is participating in Camp this month? What do you plan to work on? What’s your crazy goal?
I’ll be starting my writing at midnight, per normal tradition for me now. Expect all the stories of Camp NaNo for next month of blog posts, it’s sure to be a fun ride!
And now I’ll leave you with my honorable mention tale to sign off for the week again:
The blast knocked me off my feet. Debris pelted me with an alarming force, tearing at my skin and clothes. Plumes of smoke and dust swallowed my vision and sucked away the air from the world around me.
My ears were ringing loudly, normal sound was muffled and far off. Cries. Screaming. Weeping. Shouting. Car alarms blaring in the background.
Anguish. I could hear anguish, and pain. Panic.
I coughed and shakily pushed myself up to sit. My gaze traveled upwards. Smoke and flames licked the sky from the center of the 911 call center I had been walking past. Ash and dirt rained from the explosions like a spring shower. My eyes drifted around the block, ears still buzzing with a thousand bees.
Someone was scream-crying to my right, mere feet away, yelling someone’s name. A little boy was sprawled unnaturally at the woman’s side. Crushed under a too large chunk of cement blocks. Blood was pooling rapidly around his head.
Dead. He was already dead.
People were running frantically, passing by in a blur. A man tripped over my legs, then kept limping along. I pushed up more.
“Ma’am? Are you alright, ma’am? Can you hear me? Don’t move now.”
The bees in my ears quieted slightly and I registered the pedestrian kneeling at my side, checking me over. First responder training? Maybe. Another explosion rumbled the ground and I looked to the burning building. Someone else screamed shrilly.
I heard someone yell terror attack.
And here is what thy judge said about my tale: No, the narrator is not alright. Are any of us, knowing that scenes like that take place all over the world day after day? Sometimes we need to crawl into the darkness to understand the problem.