Getting Started: Part Two

Stuck for writing ideas? Need some inspiration to reboot the old brain? Try these for size:

Idea bank

Get yourself a notebook and pen or get thee to an iPhone/iPad. Take it with you everywhere and become an eavesdropping, snippet-pinching thief.

I’m not talking about plagiarism. Just record your impressions of the public realm:

-Eavesdrop on people’s conversations and write down the weird things they talk about.
-Watch people in cafes and describe their facial expressions.
-Listen to conversations on the bus or in shops and pilfer words and colloquialisms and mannerisms.

If it’s interesting to you now, no doubt it will still be interesting to you when you go to develop a character for your next short story or novel.

Expose yourself…to other forms of art:

-go to an art or photography exhibition. Picture trumps words, or so they say.
-Attend the ballet, opera or a play
-Watch television. I know, what an ordeal! But some television programmes have excellent plot lines, snappy dialogue and really hot guys. What’s not to like?


Sounds so obvious but reading books, especially those outside your comfort zone, will almost always get you through a dry spot. Other people’s ideas kick start yours.

If you don’t like romances, or fantasy or thrillers – read one. There’s a reason why these books sell millions of copies and while you may struggle to get beyond the first chapter, persevere and you might just learn something.


Do yoga, meet and talk to people who are different to you, travel, explore, discover…

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