Writing Advice: dealing with too many ideas

As a Writer, I often find myself in a situation many people might be surprised to hear me complain about: having too many ideas.

How can a Writer have too many ideas?

Okay, maybe not too many, but too many to write all at once.

When I wrote Wounded Bride, I had to deal with the possibilities of what could happen.

Who were the killers?

Why did they kill people?

I also had to decide between the possibilities of who killed whom.

That’s right. I didn’t know in advance, at least not for all of them.

Just recently, I started writing a story to post on here. The problem was, I came up with two possible endings. Which ending was the “right” one?

Because I want to post both of them, I’m going to do exactly that. There’s going to be Ending 1, and Ending 2.

It can be really hard to collapse a universe of possibility into just one story, and you don’t have to.

While multiple endings aren’t all that common, you can hash out the possible plots and pick just one, keep the various endings in separate files for yourself, or turn some of the not-so-relevant stuff into other stories.

There are as many things you can do with your ideas as there are ideas themselves.

You can schedule them for weeks, months, or years in the future, but beware, other ideas can and will come between them.

There’s really not much you can do to stop the flood, except to write them down or keep track of them somehow.

Stories demand to be written, and Writers must comply.

The voices of our characters will not be silent, and to try to ignore them for long feels almost tantamount to ignoring a baby’s hungry cry.

The imperative to write is real, and the call of ideas sometimes relentless.

The only way to keep your head above water is to write. The ideas will bend and allow themselves to take on structure at your request, but ignore them you must not.

If you meet them in a clearing somewhere in the forest of your mind, they’ll guide you, nourish you, sustain you, and together, characters and Writers will flourish in an eternal cycle of ideas, people, words, books, and stories.



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