Monday, August 7, 2017

What Inspires You?

"You see things; and you say 'Why?' But I dream things that never were; and I say 'Why not?'" George Bernard Shaw

Are you a writer? If so, what inspires you? A spark of imagination, a snatch of conversation, a true story or a real life experience?

I always find it fun to discover what exactly inspires a writer to conceive a story.

Stephenie Meyer had a dream that inspired her to write Twilight. Margaret Mitchell modeled Pansie O'Hara (who later became Scarlett O'Hara) in Gone with the Wind after herself, and her experience of falling in love with the wrong man.

Those Who Save Us, by Jenna Blum, is fiction based on real stories of Germans living in the United Sates during World War II. The Reader, by German judge and law professor Bernard Schlink, focuses on the generation of children born to parents who lived through World War II in Germany. During the 1960's, as adults, this generation (including Schlink) questioned what their parents knew and didn't know, and asks how they could have let the atrocities occur. Schlink's moving story focuses on a young teenage boy who has an affair with an older woman. Only years later, as a law student, does he learn of her direct involvement with the concentration camps.

One of my favorite movies is Finding Neverland. In it, the audience sees how Scottish dramatist J.M. Barrie, through imagination and his real experience of befriending three boys (and their evil Captain Hook like grandmother) came up with the idea for the stage play Peter Pan. "With a wee bit of imagination," Barrie (portrayed by Johnny Depp on film) says, "anything is possible."

Right now a short story is running through my head. I heard Oprah Winfrey say at the conclusion of her show one day, "Our cameras will be at Celine Dion's performance with today's guest at Madison Square Garden next month, but I won't be able to attend."

"Hmm," I thought, "what if she had a clone?"

As writers, we allow our imaginations to grow wild with just a seed of inspiration. What fun!

What inspires you? Thanks for visiting and have a great week!

Originally posted 7/19/10.

3 comments:

William Kendall said...

That's a creative idea!

Norma Beishir said...

I've already done cloning.

I get my inspiration from all kinds of places: eavesdropping on conversations in public places, news stories, dreams, just about anything holds possibility.

Maria McKenzie said...

@William: I'll get around to that story at some point!

@Norma: I'll have to read your cloning story to help inspire mine;). You are so right, just about anything holds possibility!