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I've been writing for a long, long time. I started at the age of nine. I write out my daydreams. To me, and to other fiction writers, that is a normal activity. I do not take it for granted since there have been times when I could not write--not because I didn't have ideas but because I was suffering from grief or going through some other difficult time in life. But most of the time, I enjoy sitting at my keyboard and typing out--letter by letter, word by word, page by page--the story in my head.
Last weekend, I chatted with someone who is an avid reader. For a while, we discussed other authors' books we both read. Then she asked me to tell her about my latest book. So I did. I gave her more than a blurb. (Hint: Next time stick with the blurb.)
She expressed amazement and wondered where I got my ideas. (Big sigh.)
I began to wonder if only writers have story ideas--or if everyone else ignores the ideas that are all around them. Life is complex, challenging, and emotional. Everyone goes through a myriad of experiences at various stages in life. Plus there are historical events that are intriguing to dive into. I find reading the daily news fills my mind with all sorts of notions.
All anyone has to do is invent a few characters, drop them into a thorny situation, and then record--letter by letter, word by word, page by page--everything that happens to those imaginary people. It takes time. There are days when the writing does not go well, but with a heaping dose of persistence the story will come to an end--nicely packaged into a bundle of adventures that make a whole lot more sense than incidents in real life.
That's what writers do. I consider it a blessing and a lot of fun.