Thursday, May 14, 2009

That New Idea Smell

If only new ideas came with a neat scent, like new cars do. Did you know you can actually buy air sprays that smell like New Car? I kid you not. It's strange, but there's something exciting about that scent. It screams SHINY! NEW! FUN!

It's pretty rare (for me, at this point in my writing career) for me to stumble upon an idea that just reeks of the New Car Smell. The one you want to inhale for hours, roll on the seats, and revel in its awesomeness. I stumbled into one of these ideas on Friday, May 1st, over a pitcher of sangria and an eclectic movie marathon.

Most of my ideas start with a question. THREE DAYS TO DEAD began with, "Why would a dead vampire hunter be brought back to life? What could only she do?" It evolved into something a tad different, but that was the basic question.

The New Car idea I'm playing with now began as, "Why would a coven of vampires hold a town hostage?" I had no idea, so I let my mind wander a bit over the course of the movie marathon. At some point (probably around 2 am), another question occurred tome: "If vampires did take a town hostage, who would be sent in to negotiate?"

I woke up Saturday morning with my mind whirling, did a few hours of research, and by noon I had half a dozen characters and an opening scene in mind. So I started writing. I've written every day since, and my word count is sitting pretty at a healthy 33,000 words.

I'm having fun with this idea, more fun than I've had since I wrote the first draft of TDTD. Exploring a new world, with new characters and their issues, is very freeing. I'm excited to write this, because I'm uncertain where it's going. I'm getting there at the same time as my heroine, and that's part of the excitement of the journey.

Now all I need is a title. :)

How do you guys react to new ideas? Do they take you over?

6 comments:

ralfast said...

Good luck with your new project. I almost always start with the title, it gives the story a sense of permanency.

Jamie said...

Some ideas hit me hard (new car-like), and others take awhile. My short story idea took two weeks to "brew", but is now just taking off without me. Wish it would have done that from the start...

Congratulations on your bright, shiny new plot!

I've been wanting to ask: would you share what style Three Days to Dead is written in? First person? Third? Amazon doesn't have a "peek inside" feature up for it yet...

Thanks! :-)

-Kelly Meding said...

falfast - About half the time I have a title when I start. TDTD didn't happen as a title until halfway into querying. During writing and editing, I called it Dark City (boring, I know).

Jamie - TDTD is first person, past tense. I love writing in both first and third, and each story demands something different. Thanks for asking!

Susan Shay said...

Don't you love that smell? My ideas start with questions, too, but they're usually, "I wonder what would happen if . . . ?
Great post!
Susan Shay
Blind Sight
3twistedsisters.wordpress.com

Sewicked said...

I usually get the "oooh shiny!" part of ideas. It's a toy to play with and see what happens. Titles take forever. My current (okay, the one that's closest to completion) is simply titled with the lead characters' names. Now, that's boring!

-Kelly Meding said...

Thanks, Susan! Good to see you here. :)

Sewicked - I've done the character name title before, as a placeholder for something else. Fortunately, titles aren't so important until you're ready to submit, so there's time to come up with an eye-catching one!