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Writing Excuses Transcripts

because words are smart!

Writing Excuses 10.2: I Have an Idea; What Do I Do Now?
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mbarker wrote in wetranscripts
Writing Excuses 10.2: I Have an Idea; What Do I Do Now?

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2015/01/11/writing-excuses-10-2-i-have-an-idea-what-do-i-do-now/

Key Points: Taking an idea and expanding or developing it towards a story. Questions: What problems can that idea cause? Who will be hurt by it? What painful decisions does that idea create? How does it affect the extremes of society? What's the black market? How can it be misused? Where is the conflict? How does it make people's lives harder? How do people adapt to it? Next, which specific characters have a stake, and can do something about it? Who is at the crux of the problem, the center of the conflict? Consider what other ideas can be mixed or combined with this one. Do a brainstorming session, about what would happen if, what would happen next, how does that affect the person. For geewhiz devices, what would I do with this? And would I get caught? Wish fulfillment and the darker uses. Also, dig deeper. First ideas are often too obvious. Look for a problem you don't know how to solve yet. Beware of overly complicated plans -- Occam's Razor applies to conflicts, too. Combine ideas, push for deeper, do your brainstorming! Idea development is a great place for brainstorming, write down every wacky thing you can think of. Extrapolate. Spend your energy on awesome ideas that you are excited about. Use what if, how, why, then start in the middle and work out, retrofitting and expanding to fill out the story. Use plot, setting, character to organize ideas and identify holes. Do thumbnail sketches of possible stories around an idea.
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[Brandon] All right. Let's go to our writing exercise. Now, two weeks ago, we gave you an assignment that helped you generate five ideas. You may use those. We hope that you have been doing this and you follow along. If you haven't, you'll just need to find five ideas on your own, generated through the favorite way that you like to generate ideas. Go to your book of ideas. We want you to take them and do this to them. Take two of the ideas and combine them into one story. Take another one of the ideas and change the genre. A genre swap is a great way to help yourself really kickstart a story, where you take something you were planning to be science fiction and try to tell the same story in a fantasy story. Or take something that was supposed to be a contemporary novel about dating and then make it a Western. Take another of your ideas, and we want you to take the ages and genders of the characters that you had sketched out and swap them around. Change the ages and genders of everybody in the story and see what it does to your story. With the last one, we want you to pick an idea where a choice was made and have a character make the opposite choice in this story and see where it would send you. This has been Writing Excuses. You're out of excuses. Now go write.