I think of January as a time of new beginnings and when I start a new project I like to brainstorm as many ideas as I can. Some of the things I try are: mind mapping, doodling, running what if scenarios, listing random ideas, reading the newspaper, researching a place or thing, and playing with plotting generators.
My goal is to bring together enough random ideas that go together, or don’t, and break them down to see how they may fit.
If I’m are unhappy with the results I’ll change location to a: coffee shop, play ground, riverbank, bench on a busy street, pub or library. It doesn’t really matter.
The trick is to breakthrough the usual barriers and find a new place where fresh ideas ignite the creator in me. I’ll list several inciting incidents, possible twists, and unexpected/unavoidable outcomes.
Once the links are made, I aim at an audience. Knowing who you are writing for makes it easier for the publisher/agent to sell your project.
Brainstorming doesn’t stop when my writing begins. It continues throughout the whole process. If I’m hit by a new idea as I work, I take a look. No doubt something inspired me.
I’m not saying go off track, but be aware. Our brains are wonderful things and whether we are aware or not they will take us where we need to go.
What do you do to bring ideas to your writing?