Where Stories Come From

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Stories revolve in my head for a long time until they naturally fall like a ripe fruit from a tree. Other times it feels like they’re writing themselves, like they’re coming out of nowhere. But they aren’t. They stem from life, experience, travel, observation of reality and people.

As a child, I used to see them as films, or even songs. Sometimes as both, looking like music videos. They started automatically in my head. What a pity they normally “aired” during rides in my parents’ car, and never when pen and paper where at hand. At the time, every journey seemed long, due to a child’s different perception of time. Lack of distraction from digital gadgets (blessed be the Eighties!) was what unleashed the mind. Today we have forgotten what real boredom is: the useful, productive dullness that eventually triggered great ideas. Cavemen knew exactly what I’m talking about.

I could read to kill time, but gazing at a page while everything else around me was twirling made me car sick. So, I often found myself roaming. I would end up in strange places, while some captivating adventure went by my window. What is inspiration? For me, it’s seeing a detail in everyday life that makes you say: “This is something I could build a story around”. Because reality can be dull, and I want it to veer off, so that it will look more like the films, books, or songs that entertain me when I’m bored.

Sure you got it by now: stories come from boredom.


3 thoughts on “Where Stories Come From

  1. I know exactly what you mean. I’m lacking creative inspiration recently, but I know exactly why: I haven’t really stopped. By the time I go to bed I’m far too tired to be able to lie there and think for any length of time before falling asleep. And I’m always doing things during the day, whether around the house, on the laptop, or reading a book. Sometimes we need to allow ourselves to be bored for a while just so we can catch up with our thoughts and allow stories to form.

  2. I’ve been there too. I once wrote an entire English assignment in my head on the drive home from school. The amazing thing was it stayed there until I scrounged for paper and pen.
    I’ve also discovered that a notepad and pen beside the bed are very handy things because invariably that missing piece of the story puzzle will solve itself just as the world tilts towards dreams.

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