Friday, May 1, 2009

Finding Story Ideas in the Strangest Places

Writers need to keep their eyes open and their wits about them at all times. A long day of travel and a middle seat in the back row of an airplane create opportunities to overhear interesting dialogue. Annoying people make excellent victims. A day in a hotel room with no window triggers a setting. People-watching leads to new quirks and habits for our characters.

So here's the thing. The first victim in my next mystery will be a waiter, and I won't say any more about that. I will have a young male suspect who wears his pants with the crotch hanging almost to his knees. One character will rub her nose and sniff a lot, and the protagonist will wonder whether she has allergies...or whether she's a drug addict. And something will happen in a creepy hotel room while the writer is trying to update her blog.

Hmmm. That hits a little too close to home.


Helen said...

Is that ominous, creepy music I hear in the background. If not, it should be. That story needs a soundtrack.


Enid Wilson said...

I would have thought a waiter will be quite boring but you made him sound ominous. So victim as in he will die? or assaulted?

conarnold said...

Good writing when you scare yourself! Sounds like you have some interesting characters going there.

Gayle Carline said...

Very cool ideas. A day spent observing people anywhere is great research for a novelist - makes the task of populating our worlds so much easier!

Gayle Carline

Sarah said...

ok! you have me interested!