Saturday, October 2, 2010

I Wish I Could Catch It Like a Cold! ;)

"No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader; No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader." -Robert Frost

As writers, we all have experienced that moment when we know we have accidentally written something wonderful! It may be only a sentence, it may be a twist in the story, but whatever it is, each author treasures that warm pleasure that seeps through your mind when you have penned it, and captured the moment. Suddenly your writer's cramp disappears, and for the next few moments, all else is oblivious to you as you scribble as fast as you everly can to secure your idea. This fleeting, illusive, rare feeling is what most people call "inspiration". I often look at famous authors' writing, and marvel at the creativity in their works. How did Baroness Emuska Orczy manage to write such thrilling books about The Scarlet Pimpernel over and over and still make them heart-stopping? How did Jane Austen manage to create such witty dialog between her characters? How did Lucy Maud Montgomery know that the perfect name for her red-headed orphan was Anne Shirley, and that she had to live at a house called Green Gables? How did Charles Dickens learn to describe so perfectly the little idiosyncrasies of humanity? How did Frances Hodgeson Burnett write about the transformation of Sara Crewe's attic in such a way that her readers can almost see the room for themselves?
I could go on for a much longer span of time. One thing I have learned, is that inspiration does not come when you'd like it to, and it only comes at times when you least expect it! :) Often the times I am inspired are when I am hanging laundry out on the line, or spreading mulch in our landscape business, with nary a pen or piece of paper in sight. So I hold fast the idea in my brain, mull it over, and by the time I get home, run up the stairs, grab a notebook, and begin scribbling at least the bare bones of it. Have any of you ever had a moment of "inspired-ness"? :) There are times when I read over my writing, and think, "Wow. That is actually a neat name." or "I actually wrote that? That's pretty good!" as well as times when I think, "Oh mercy! I ought to burn this!" :D I tend to have bits and pieces of ideas I hoard. Mostly names. Names of houses, names of characters, names of places.....I am saving them for the perfect moment, and it has not yet come! :) One name I have spoken of before is "Katharine Durrant". I think it is a beautiful, regal name...the problem? I have yet to write a story where a beautiful, regal, woman comes in to take possession of the name! :D I have named three houses in three separate stories "Windyside Cottage". None of the stories have made it to completion. The name of that cottage belongs to a place in my mind that I have not yet been able to recreate! Names do not stick if they don't belong to the character! :) I've learned that the hard way! At some point I will tell you my grand, name-thinking-up strategy, but that belongs to another post! :) Anyway, I am doing a post about inspiration, because I am scrubbing around for some in my brain, and as all too often happens, it doesn't want to come right now! Can you imagine the amazingly, awe-struck feeling the writers of the Bible would have had when God inspired their writing? I cannot begin to fathom that idea! :) I began a tradition last year of writing a Christmas tale for a gift to some member in my family. Last year, it was "A Tale of Fairfax and Cloves" for Sarah. I will post it in full around the holidays, but do remember it had absolutely no editing done to it, so it isn't extremely good writing! But I need to get some inspiration for this year's story, so I'm keeping my thinking cap on! I need one of Josephine March's "Scribbling Suits"! ;)
"Her `scribbling suit' consisted of a black woolen pinafore on which she could wipe her pen at will, and a cap of the same material, adorned with a cheerful red bow, into which she bundled her hair when the decks were cleared for action."

So here's to brilliant ideas! Keep those pens scribbling! :)
Waiting for a good idea to stumble upon me,

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