STORYSTORM 2018 Update

 

In case you forgot, STORYSTORM, founded by Tara Lazar is taking place this month. In the past, I’ve posted my ideas here. I’m trying something different this year and simply keeping a spreadsheet of my ideas and posting updates at the blog.

Today makes 12 days that we are into this annual event. Believe it or not, I’ve managed to come up with 12 ideas already. I’m struggling, because tired brains don’t think well. Some of the ideas I will probably end up tossing when I get around to reviewing them. The nice thing is that each day a different guest blogger is featured at Tara’s blog to give us a healthy dose of inspiration.

Are you participating in STORYSTORM? Any other events you plan to participate in this year?

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STORYSTORM 2018 Update

 

In case you forgot, STORYSTORM, founded by Tara Lazar is taking place this month. In the past, I’ve posted my ideas here. I’m trying something different this year and simply keeping a spreadsheet of my ideas and posting updates at the blog.

We are six days into STORYSTORM and I have six ideas on the spreadsheet–all mysteries of one kind or another. I’m excited about this annual event because it has given me countless ideas and led to a published book. one under contract, and one I am going to be querying agents with. I also have several picture books finished or in the editing stage. Here’s hoping I can keep up this pace and stay on track.

Are you participating this year? If so, how’s it going so far?

STORYSTORM 2018 is Coming!

Tara Lazar’s STORYSTORM 2018 will start tomorrow! Thanks to this annual event (formerly known as Picture Book Idea Month), I have come up with numerous story ideas over the last few years, including one that became my third published book, Macaroni and Cheese for Thanksgiving, and also Amos Faces His Bully, which will be released by Guardian Angel Publishing in 2018. The children’s story I recently wrote at writing group also came about thanks to this challenge.
Any writer interested in brainstorming new story ideas in January is invited to join. Any genre, any style; student, amateur, hobbyist, aspiring author or professional.

How does STORYSTORM work? It’s simple…

  • Register at Tara’s blog by signing your name ONCE in the comments on the registration post. Registering makes you eligible for prizes.
  • Visit her blog daily (taralazar.com) in January for inspirational essays by guest bloggers—professional authors, illustrators and experts in creativity.
  • Instead of visiting the blog directly, you can receive the daily posts via email by clicking the “Follow Tara’s Blog” button in the left column—look under her photo for it.
  • After you have read the daily inspiration, jot down a daily story idea in a journal (the annual CafePress journal will be linked when ready), computer, anywhere you like to write. Some days you might have no ideas, but some days you might have five or more.
  • At the end of January, if you have at least 30 ideas, sign the STORYSTORM pledge she posts and qualify for prizes.
  • Prizes include professional consults, signed books, original art, writerly gadgets and gizmos.

In previous years, I’ve posted my ideas here on my blog. This year I’ll track them on my computer and give a weekly update on my progress.

Good luck to all participants!

Final Day of STORYSTORM

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STORYSTORM comes to an end today. Wow! Hard to believe how quickly 30 days goes by. I’ve enjoyed it and will really enjoy further contemplating some of these story ideas and fleshing them out. Here are the final three I have to offer:

Idea 28: I would like to write a short biography about Belle Reynolds who was a nurse during the Civil War. She was born in Shelburne Falls, MA and moved to Iowa with her family before she married a man from Illinois in 1860. She became a daughter of the Seventeenth Illinois Infantry and was honored for her actions at the Battle of Shiloh.

Idea 29: I would also like to write a short biography of Sarah Emma Edmonds, who left home to escape an arranged marriage and became Franklin Thompson, eventually enlisting in the Union army. After the war, she married and settled in Texas. In 1897, she was mustered in Houston to the George B. McClellan Post of the Grand Army of the Republic, which was a “Civil War veterans’ organization committed to preserving the memory of Union solider sacrifice.” She was the only woman ever to be thus honored.

Idea 30: I would like to re-imagine the story of Little Red Riding Hood. Make her a more modern girl–maybe with a red hoodie–and have her outwit the wolf on her own.

That’s it for this year’s STORYSTORM. I hope you’ll be kind enough to share your feedback on some of these ideas.

STORYSTORM IDEAS 16 – 27

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Who knew January would be so hectic? This time of year real estate is relatively slow, but I haven’t had much down time to participate in STORYSTORM this month. The health issues plaguing my father-in-law certainly haven’t helped. We almost lost him last week, but he finally seems on the mend. So where does that leave us? With 12 story ideas to come up with as of today. Here it goes….

Idea 16: How about a story of a young girl who cherishes the memory of her grandfather by planting a memorial garden in her back yard?

Idea 17: There is a story idea I’m tossing around about a wife who attempts to murder her husband and then takes off to Mexico with her new boyfriend. The husband recovers with a sketchy memory of what unfolded, but when he figures it out he goes down to Mexico to confront her.

Idea 18: The first full-length novel I wrote was women’s fiction and it centered around three sisters. I would like to write a prequel to that story that unfolds during their childhood: maybe when they are tweens or teens.

Idea 19: Have you ever read anything by Michaela MacColl? She writes historical fiction that centers around the childhoods of famous people like Queen Victoria, Louisa May Alcott, and Emily Dickinson. I’m up to writing something similar. Maybe Elizabeth Cady Stanton or Susan B. Anthony.

Idea 20: What if there was a little boy who saw Joseph’s brothers sell him into slavery (Genesis 37)? What if his family didn’t believe him when he told what he saw, but as an adult he met Joseph again?

Idea 21: How about a child who witnesses Pentecost and how it transforms his life and that of his family? (Acts 2)

Idea 22: The story of Jonah and the whale has been told often, but I don’t know that it’s been told from the whale’s point of view.

Idea 23: I wonder what a child would have thought when Jesus fed a crowd of 5,000 like we are told in the Gospel of Matthew.

Idea 24: Mercy Street is a Civil War era drama on PBS. Inspired by real people and events, it digs into the lives of those who work and visit the Mansion House Hospital in Union-occupied Alexandria, Virginia. To fictionalize the lives of the Green daughters of Mansion House would be so interesting if you started with a year or two before the war and then continued into wartime.

Idea 25: Though this idea has been done before, it remains important: a tween in a small town is the victim of extreme bullying online and in person. She eventually commits suicide and the town residents–especially young folks–are left with the challenge of whether to stay the same or change how they treat each other.

Idea 26: I’m ready for another Christmas story too. Not sure what yet. Maybe an animal story that takes place in the forest where all the animals talk and something special happens.

Idea 27: Last one for today: how about a young string orchestra that is due to play a special event but obstacles get in their way: traffic, a flat tire, etc.?

STORYSTORM STORY IDEAS 10 – 15

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STORYSTORM is moving along swiftly and we are already at the halfway point. We are in the process of moving my father-in-law back from the nursing home and work has been nuts, so I haven’t had time to share my ideas lately. Here’s what I have for the next few:

Idea 10: A mystery with a love triangle that takes place maybe in the 60s or 70s. It would be one of those deals where a man is in love with a woman but she is in love with someone else. She winds up dead and the man who loves her works to solve the crime.

Idea 11: There are a lot of stay-at-home mom cozy mystery series, but not many stay-at-home dad cozies. I wonder if I could write one. It would be neat to write from a man’s point of view. Perhaps this dad is early to a PTO meeting and finds the principal murdered.

Idea 12: If I ever finish Amelia’s Mission, I wonder if there is another story involving some of those characters. Perhaps it is a storyline that features Ralph in a larger role or the focus becomes his family instead of hers; perhaps he learns some of his own family history.

Idea 13: How about a mystery about private school kids on a field trip who work to uncover a missing artifact or to find a student who goes missing. Being a private school, I could limit the number of students so it would be more realistic.

Idea 14: Would love to try a pioneering story one day. Something like a man and woman who take advantage of the Homestead Act to move west and create a new life. Better yet, maybe it is a young man and young  woman who meet along the wagon train and fall in love.

Idea 15: How about a short chapter reader from a shelter puppy’s perspective about finding a new home.