Write it down!

Everyone has an idea for a story. To dream up ideas is a part of being human. Writing down an idea is what changes you from being a dreamer to being a writer. When an idea is unwritten it is half-real like a dream. Writing it down is the act of creation. Writing is making something out of nothing.

Once you have your idea on paper it might need to be worked on. It might need to be changed and developed or revised. All those things are secondary because the most important and first step has been taken. You have written something down.

So take the plunge, write down your idea! Becoming a writer is easier than you think.

I have hundreds of ideas floating around, and dozens of works-in-progress.

Everytime I think of an idea for a story, I go ahead and start writing it. Stories can sit on the shelf for years before they get finished without harming them in the least. But if stories are never written down they might be forgotten like a dream.

This approach leads to me having lots of projects in various stages of completion at all times.

Earlier this year I wrote a novel. In order to accomplish this I made a pact with myself to not start any new stories and just work on that one. I have a completed rough draft of the novel now, and the manuscript is in the hands of a few trusted readers.

While I await feedback on my novel I am indulging in a story-starting binge. I start a new story anytime I feel like it, pushing aside whatever had been at the top of the pile to make room for the newest idea.
The ideas had been piling up in my mind during those months that I was working on the novel, so it feels good to write them all down and make them real.

Lately I go from one project to the next, spending my budgeted creative writing time each day to work on whichever project I like.

Currently in heavy rotation are three stories. I am starting to feel the itch to finish one up so that I can submit it. The hard part is choosing which story to focus on completing.

Like all important decisions, I will allow your internet comments to guide me. (OK, I hope you realize that last sentence was sarcastic!) Based only on the following one-word descriptions… which story should I finish first?

1) Weathervane

2) Slugs

3) Magic

Muriel is the creator of 'Documinutes: 60 second documentaries' and a contributor to the podcast 'This Manic Mama.'

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