Last night at ten o'clock, I realized I hadn't written a blog post for today. Not only had I not written it, I hadn't even thought about what to write.
I haven't done that in a long time. So if this sort of rambles all over the place, you'll know why. Even at ten o'clock I didn't get to writing this right away. I'm thinking on the fly. The time is late. And I'm tired. So my words will get a brief proof before I place the post in the queue.
It's not really anything new. Thinking on the fly is pretty much what we do when we create a story.
It doesn't matter if you're a plotter or a pantser, whether your thoughts come out as bullet points on an outline or as your first draft.
The Original Idea comes first. For all of us. It doesn't always have to be the same thing. Original Idea can be a character, place, time of year or time of day, a setting, a premise, a what-if, an action, or absolutely anything.
We may not stick to it. We may change it as we go. Or we may switch it around. Or we may do countless other unspeakable things to our words before we're done with them and call it a story.
But somewhere in that story is our Original Idea.
It may not have grown up as you thought it would, but it's in there someplace. When you find it, dust it off a little, make it shine. Then send it out in the world to play.
After all, Original Idea is just that. It's part of you. You are the only one who could have written the story exactly as you did. You had help from critique partners, betas, editors. But you created the story based on your Original Idea.
Be proud of it. It won't let you down.