Readers always want to know where writers get their ideas from. In reality, ideas come from everywhere. They come in snipits of conversations that we overhear or, in my case, from my dreams. My friend Tamara has a great post on the subject, and she tells the story of how she is driving by the courthouse one day and sees the line of prisoners as they are being taken back to jail. She notices that the prisoner at the head of the line is a woman, and wonders what she did to get there. She then proceeds to construct a whole story in her mind. The same thing happened to me the other day.
The spouse and I went to lunch at a local deli, and there was a group of National Guard in there. I was waiting for our drinks, and I overheard a conversation next to me between a young man, probably no older than 20, and an older gentlemen, I'm not going to guess his age! I didn't hear what the older gentleman asked, but the kid answered, "Well, they demoted me and I have to take a course on drug abuse, but they have a program in my home town, so I'll probably just take it there while I'm home for the summer." I had our drinks at that point, so I had to walk away without hearing the rest of the conversation, but that was enough to pique my interest. What had the kid done? Was he caught drinking? Did he have someone else's prescription drugs? A multitude of scenarios ran through my mind, and I developed a story about soldiers on another planet fighting a war and a young kid turns to a local drug to deal with the pain. I haven't written anything down yet, and who knows if I actually will? It just amazes me how ideas can crop up in the oddest of situations.
Other than that, I'm almost done with my third story. I have about a paragraph left to write, then I'll let it sit for a day and do the edits this weekend. I also submitted a story for an anthology. I submitted one last week, and the editor liked the idea, but she passed because it didn't fit well enough with the theme. She told me I could submit another story if I had one, but I didn't, so I asked if I could edit the story and resubmit it. She said yes, so that's what I did. I'm still waiting to hear back. I don't know if it fits the theme any better, but at least I got the chance to revise it. I'll let you know what they say!