My last post discussed drawing writing inspiration from yourself and your inner circle. Everyday writing inspiration can also come from your daily routine. Look at what you do most days and see if it can generate sparks for stories. Here’s what I do most days of the work week.
- Fix my oldest breakfast and pack lunch.
- Feed the cat.
- Drive my oldest to school.
- Fix my youngest breakfast and pack lunch.
- Drive my youngest to school.
- Go to the grocery store.
- Do housework
- Write for blog and on my next novel.
- Bike (when the weather is good).
- Attend appointments.
So what inspiration can I derive from my daily routine? Well, the parking lots at both schools are usually nuts. The only reason there aren’t accidents is because everyone is driving slowly. It’d be a great place for a meet-cute in a romance. Widowed dad bumps fenders with single mom, and their relationship is off to a rocky start. I could use our outdoor cat as a meet-cute too. Woman is worried when her outside cat misses a meal. When she goes looking for him, she meets her cute new neighbor.
My outdoor cat could kick off a mystery. When the cat misses a meal, his ten-year-old owner gathers his neighborhoods friends to look for him. The kids find the cat in an abandoned house and discover something strange in the house–evidence someone is living there or a secret room in the basement.
Changes in patterns of behavior is a great way to start a story. Such as the elderly neighbor who always waves as a mom drives her kids to school. For three mornings is a row, she doesn’t appear. What’s going on? Or the neighbor is still in her yard but quits waving. Having a character ride a bike or jog in the same area every day would allow him to notice a change, such as a house that always had an immaculate yard hasn’t had the grass mowed in two weeks.
What everyday writing inspiration can you think of?
This a great brainstorm starter! One summer my father-in-law fed the cats outside at dusk, and before long a skunk was joining in the evening meal. A skunk could add several options to a story line – feuding neighbors both get sprayed, or twin boys decide to catch and tame the skunk but once it’s in a cage they don’t know what they can do with it without getting sprayed, or somehow the skunk could be at a crime scene and the perpetrator gets sprayed, which later gives him away to the story’s heroine who solves the mystery 😉
You’re so right that everyday routines have lots of options!
That’s a great story! Yes, those are the kind of real life experiences we writers need to draw on for our stories. Have you read “Homer Price” or Centerburg Tales”? I can’t remember which book the story it’s in, but Homer Price is a boy with a pet skunk names Aroma.
Yes! We love Homer Price when he catches the criminals by leading them to the sheriff’s office with his pet skunk – LOL!