The Elusive Nature of Inspiration

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One of my most popular fan fiction stories arose from a throwaway line from a stand-up comic. So yeah, Inspiration can come from absolutely anywhere.

Justine Manzano ~ Author

“Where do you get your ideas?” is a question I often get when I’m discussing the nature of my latest story, usually with a person who does not write. Any writer knows that writers don’t know where their ideas come from. In his writing book/memoir “On Writing,” Stephen King said, “There is no Idea Dump, no Story Central, no Island of the Buried Bestsellers; good story ideas seem to come quite literally from nowhere, sailing at you right out of the empty sky: two previously unrelated ideas come together and make something new under the sun. Your job isn’t to find these ideas but to recognize them when they show up.”

It’s true. We have no idea. However, we often remember our line of thinking when we’ve come up with some of our ideas. So where have some of mine come from? How different are their origins? Do some story…

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Checking in

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Oh dear.
Having made regular monthly entries here all through 2016, here it is April 1st 2017 and I’ve not made a single post.
I haven’t had the impetus of resolutions to bring me here, but I think it is more than that.
I feel as if nobody outside family and one or two really close friends bothered to read the blog at all last year. It wasn’t all that interesting or engaging so I can’t blame people for not interacting. But that leaves me feeling ‘why bother writing if you can’t say anything worth reading’?
I’ve hit a bit of a slump with my writing in general.
The crossover story I was so confident of finishing has hit a huge snag and I’m really not sure how I’m going to get around it. The numbers just don’t add up for the solution I’d devised for one problem, and I can’t reduce them enough to make sense in terms of the rest of the story.
So I’m having a crisis of confidence and not feeling like a writer at all.

On the other hand, in a small way I’m now a published author!
My contribution ‘Big Ben’ [a fan fiction version of a proposed but unwritten QL episode] made it into Matt Dale’s ‘Beyond the Mirror Image’ – an Observer’s guide to Quantum Leap, which he self-published using Kickstarter. This is a wonderfully comprehensive companion for fans of the series, and can be obtained from http://www.tmebooks.uk
In fact, my name features several times in the work, and I’m quite proud of it. It is surreal to see my name in print like that. I have achieved a tiny degree of immortality!

In other news, I have sent my 12th pitch off for ‘There’s a Dragon in my Soup!” . I was delighted to find out that Nosy Crow publishers are currently accepting unagented pitches, so I worked one up and emailed it on 26th March. Their website says to allow 6 months. Putting a positive spin on the wait, I told my friend that at least while it is ‘out there’ I can dream that the answer will be ‘yes, please!’. Fingers crossed. I know I’m never going to become a billionaire from these books, even if they spawn a heap of merchandise {Which I believe they could}. A certain amount of pecuniary reward would naturally be most welcome. Far more important for me would be the knowledge that my stories were giving pleasure to children. To read one at StoryTime at work and have the kids say they enjoyed it, then telling them “I wrote that!” – would be a dream come true.