You may be under the impression that a writer is someone who writes. Just writes. But you would be wrong. I don’t mean to be a “brainy Smurf” here, but I must say that writers do a whole lot more than have ideas and write them down.
I am learning all of this the “hard way,” mind you. Before I got into all of this writing business (and it truly is a business), I never dreamed that there was so much that really went into it. As a writer, one must not only be a keen observer of the life and world around them, they must also have a good work ethic and be self-motivated and a have a good use of words and the ability to get them down on paper (or computer screen).
Alas, the job is not done. Writers think and mull. They research and network. They find time in odd crevices of the day. “Oh, I have 6 minutes while I wait for this pot of water to boil, I better dash off an email or get an idea down before it fritters out of my brain.” Writers must be organized and know where they placed a file, a piece of paper, a sticky note. Writers must also be technologically savvy…”how do I work that zip-drive again?” And writers must follow-up with busy editors and agents, and they must read.
For it is reading–good reading–that helps writers connect their own story ideas to ones that have already been written. Reading helps solidify ideas that have been clattering around in your brain, “Ah ha! There’s an idea!” No, of course I am not suggesting you plaigerize, but you can sort of adapt ideas from one book to your own–using completely different contexts and characters. After all, how many scenes and dialog can really be original these days? Humm…
For me now…well, I am finding that I keep stumbling upon resouces and ideas that I love, but I wonder where they will fit into my manuscript? I don’t know if writers ever fully feel “done.” Even when that book is staring back at them on the bookshelf.