As soon as I tell someone I’ve written a young adult novel about a teenager, a guardian angel and demons that’s filled with intrigue, mayhem and murder, someone will invariably respond with, “Wow! Where did you get that idea?”
“Uh … it just popped into my head,” is my intelligent reply.
Of course, there’s always a back story for an idea. For this particular story I heard a mother and daughter talking about her “invisible playmate” and I said to myself, “What if her invisible friend is really an angel?”
Sometime later — years later in fact — the idea for Lucy’s Angel was born. I can’t even pinpoint the exact time the idea took root. It was just there when I decided to write the book.
Ideas (to me) are like raindrops falling from clouds heavy with moisture — some ideas are absorbed into my fertile imagination, and others just run off the surface, never to be thought of again. My challenge is to choose the best idea, as my mind is inundated with them! For example, I was sitting in a restaurant with family members today when someone made a remark about Chinese firms buying vast amounts of farmland in the United States. I thought, “Hmmmm, I could develop an interesting plot from that.”
Will I use the idea?
I don’t know. But I’ve noted it and I’ll let it percolate. Perhaps someday it will become a story. Maybe not.
That’s the way ideas are – they are abundant and free. All I have to do is watch and listen.