Where do I get my ideas? Let me follow the same thread as last post, and look at my last three features.
“101″ is obvious. That story has been my hobby since 1998. “Sheep’s End” grew out of an adventure I created for some role-playing friends. “By the Book” comes, in theme, from something I wanted to say. The plot is nothing special: a family breaking up.
Find a conflict and build around it. That’s the basics.
Keep a journal or at least a pen on you at all times. I have notes on notepaper, checkbooks, (paper) napkins, etc. You’re bound to think up a decent idea at some point, even if it’s only a seed that leads to a much different idea.
Not feeling creative? There are stories all around you. Pick up a newspaper and mine it for ideas. Try your hand at your own version of Shakespeare or Jules Verne or myth or fairy tale. I bet I would run out of fingers as I count film adaptations of “King Lear”.
Some writers are bursting with ideas, fraught with so many ideas that there’s no way they can use all of them. Others only come up with enough to match their needs.
The trick is not in the ideas, the trick lies in the execution.
Bonus moment of comedy for the day:
Q: What do you get when you cross a grade-school production of “Grease”, wireless microphones, and an incompetent soundboard operator?
A: Over the speaker system, you hear a cast member go to the bathroom during act two.