Ernest Hemingway perferred to write standing up. He claimed it helped the creative juices flow more freely.
Word Salad is not a story for the faint of heart nor for the casual reader- the book is overwhelmingly gory at times, overwrought with theatricality. What I pride myself in are very unique and shocking stories. Stories that make the reader ask, “No, could that actually happen?”
At its heart are people with real problems, but not in usual situations. I think a good story deserves very real people placed in very unusual and compromising circumstances. More of that later.
The question is, how does one come up with these ideas? How do writers sit and think about all the weird, weird things we’ll put our characters through.
Answer: shower time.
Standing under a hot stream of water, shampoo stinging your eyes, ideas come to you. Lines for poems. Ideas for stories. New plots and subplots and patches for plot holes.
So say I’m standing under the scalding jet… and I think, what about a story of a maid at a brothel? What a disgusting demoralizing job, flipping mattresses, handing out “equipment.” And what if he were a man and also having an affair with the female pimp, a hardcore prostitute named Roxi. And what if also he were an undercover cop sent in to investigate this brothel that is disguised as a hotel, to bring down this front for prostitution, only can’t dredge up any evidence because he has fallen in love with his new life.
Thus was born Part 3: Job Perks for Prostitutes.
I slip-slide across the bathroom tiles, wrap a towel around me, and rush to my laptop. Start typing. Write, write, write- even naked, what does it matter? And maybe this character has to face my protagonist anti-hero, Sebastian Martinelli. So maybe these prostitutes, they start being killed.
The thing about inspiration is that no amount of forced pain and meditation can really make it come. Inspiration does not arrive on the wings of paper birds, but maybe instead in the drippy strings of dandruff shampoo that cling to your hair.
The truth is, inspiration is found everywhere. Some writers drink, finding wisdom in the throes of lost delirium. Some shoot up herion. Some writers, they take up carpentry. Each hammer-hit thumb inspires new ideas. Pain brings wisdom.
So, I’m glad for me, nudity does. It seems a lot more convenient, anyways.
In what weird places do you birth story ideas?