Easy ideas and hard work

My little tweet of earlier in the week has attracted a few comments and questions. For those - difficult though I find it to believe that there may be many - who aren't following my e-musings with a rabid hunger, and even keener delight, what I said (in fewer than 140 characters) was this -

In my mind, the hunk of stone and the chisel. Afar, far afar, the sculpture.  Time to be brave and begin...

The question of where do my ideas for books, bits of writing, teaching etc. come from is one of the most common I'm asked, and I've waffled about it before. But perhaps what I didn't make clear was this...

I have lots of ideas and much of the time, and the large majority come to exactly nowt.  They're just passing fancies, the clicking of some electric synapse in the head area, and quickly discarded.  But I'm always glad that they're appearing, because at least it means the brain is firing, chewing away at some thinking, however sub-consciously.

The times I don't care for at all are when no ideas are coming, but that's another story and I'm trying to cut down on my asides!

What I was trying to answer here is how I know when an idea's good enough to be worth entertaining, perhaps even to the level of writing more than a hundred thousand words around it, ie. a book.

A tricky question, but what I've come to believe is this - you can often tell the worth of an idea by how much it grabs you. If the thing takes on physical form, leaps up at you, sinks its teeth into your arm, insists it leads you somewhere and simply won't let go, that tends to suggest it may well be worth bothering with.  If it loves you that much, I suppose it's only fair you should pay it some attention.

And after you've found that hunk of stone, and you're sure the pair of you make a match, then there's no other way than to grab the chisel and start working on it.  The idea, beautiful though it may be, is nowhere near enough on its own.  The annoying truth is that it has to be tended by a large amount of hard work to try to make it realise its potential.

Oh dear, this sounds like an allegory for certain other areas of life, but back to the point...

That's a brave process to begin, the actual working on the stone, and hence my little tweet. 

I've been feeling a tad off the pace of life this week, almost insulated from the world, and I suspect that's the reason - the idea has been occupying me, maybe too much, and I'm taking the first steps into setting it down on paper. It's an exciting, but daunting point of life.

Looking back on this blog - as is commonly the case with me - I'm not sure how much of the questions posed of me that I answered, but I hope it helps a little.

If there's a question you'd like to ask about the tvdetective books, or any area of my writing, you can get in touch via the contact page of the site - www.thetvdetective.com/contact.html

Maybe if you do, I might finally come up with a more informative and straightforward answer..