For me, getting a new story idea is like getting hit in the head with a basketball: not as painful as a baseball, but it gets your attention! Usually, I’m minding my own business doing something mostly unrelated to writing (like looking at Pinterest), and the idea comes out of nowhere and clocks me in the side of the head. Surprisingly, about half the time it’s a TITLE. Writers talk about concepts and premises and even characters. But for me it’s most often a snappy title. I’ve always been good at naming things (I missed my calling; I should have been in advertising). Once I even won a contest for naming something (it was the Jr high jazz band, but still, I won!). So anyway, I’ll get this great title in my mind, and the create a premise, then a partial plot (it develops as it goes), and only then do the characters begin to take shape. I’ll think, who would do this kind of thing? And the people in the story just start showing up. It seems to me like this is a backwards approach to story-telling, but it’s what comes naturally to me!

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