Writer in Motion: Week 0, Developing the Idea
The whole point of this project is to be open about the process: how writers get from initial impressions and ideas to fully polished stories, so I'm going to try to post at all the stages, even if it means multiple posts a week. Full blown accountability here, y'all.
Anyway, a few days ago, the initial post was put up, and I gave some of my initial impressions. I logged ideas of escape, respite, hope and promise, and connected it to the pagan holiday of Lughnasadh. In it people are celebrating abundance, a good harvest, but always with the knowledge that the days are diminishing, and that our crops will be dying if we don't harvest now. It's a time of preparation for the lean days ahead.
That gave me a feeling, but there's no character, no story.
Today, I spent some time coming up with potential characters. I wanted someone who is either about to experience a great loss or already has. I wanted the loss to be deeply personal, a loved one: a partner or a child. They would need a retreat to remember why they do what they're doing.
Maybe the character even goes out there with their loved one. They want privacy, an escape, somewhere to die alone, away from hospitals, or records. Ooh, they want to die off the record. There's a reason deaths are being recorded, held against the living. The loved one doesn't want the main character to suffer when they are gone, so they have to die in the middle of nowhere.
Now we're getting somewhere. I don't know exactly what the reasons are that someone has to go out to the wilderness to die, and who my character is, and how they react to this situation. I do know that the loved one dies and is buried beneath the flowers. Their body will fertilize this beauty, even if the only person who gets to see it is my main character.
The character has experienced an initial harvest, but it just a portent of the lean times ahead. This is their respite, for work still lies before them.
I'll spend the next few days fleshing out this idea. Wish me luck!