Monday, 31 March 2008

Want to write...can't write

For a few days now I've been absolutely gagging to write a short story.

I thought I'd write something for the Harpers Bazaar short story comp (entries need to be in by 11th April) but the theme (ambition) isn't sparking a thing. Actually that's not strictly true it HAS sparked an idea but it's far too ambitious for me to complete in 10 days (I'd need to do quite a lot of research before I could start writing).

Quick...give me your tips for sparking a short story idea!

p.s. Knee still hurty. Stoopid alcohol.


HelenMH said...

I usually just ask the Welshman - that's not much help is it?

Lily Sheehan said...

I usually just start writing any old nonsense and then it just comes to me. Hope that helps

Leatherdykeuk said...


Sarah Dunnakey said...

I like to start with a list of random, quickly scribbled 'what if' beginnings, most of which never come to anything, but there's usually something in there that I can develop

KAREN said...

Walking is when inspiration usually strikes for me. I did think of a story idea while I was cleaning yesterday, so they come at odd times! I couldn't get to grips with the Ambition theme either, though :o(

Cal said...

Helenmh - Ha! I ask the boyf for ideas too sometimes. He gave me one for Eurofiction when I was really stumped and it got me my highest score. It was all down to the skill of my writing and not his idea of course *cough*

Lily - Hmmm..good idea. That's how I normally write flashes and sometimes they turn into something worth keeping.

Leatherdykeuk - Ooooh that's a fantastic resource. I'm definitely going to go back there for prompts to get me writing. Brilliant. Thanks.

Sarah - Ooh yes. I'd forgotten about what if questions. That's great. Cheers.

Karen - Glad it's not just me that's struggling with this theme. Normally I LOVE a themed competition but I'm really stumped on this one. Everything I think of either sounds really twee or preachs some kind of message. Not good.

Debs said...

Ummmm. Not sure. I find it hard to think of ideas for short stories.

I like leatherdykeuk's site though, I shall have another look at that.

A. Writer said...

My ideas seem to come to me on the bus to work. Ride a bus = get an idea. I'm not sure how it works but it does for me.

L-Plate Author said...

I too use the 'what if' method, it's amazing how your mind just comes up with these wierd and wonderful things.

The idea I had for book three, which is about four women, two of their 'background stories' came from the readers pages of women's mags, I find them excellent starters for the what if game! xx

Leigh said...

I get many of my ideas when I'm cooking. Not surprisingly, my culinary delights turn out to be not all that delightful.

Sorry, not much help. Have you tried that fantastic story generator? ;-)