So as I've been plugging alone in my revision, I will admit, it hasn't been the most exciting venture. But hey, that's okay. Because just like life, writing has its up and downs and plenty of plateaus, and as long as your moving forward, you're doing good work. And just like life, at times writing surprises you with unexpected joys — namely, the joy of a new idea.
You see, at work on Friday, a bunch of my coworkers and I started talking about a balloon that has been in my cube for about a month now, given to me as part of a graduation celebration from all of my awesome coworkers. And because it bobs and floats just above my cubicle walls, said balloon greets everyone daily, twirling about as the day idles on. This balloon thus attracts attention, and speculation as to just how long it will remain floating. This topic came up in a morning chat with my friends, which was actually the product of conversation from the previous day with my boss, and so a competition sprang to life. How long will this balloon last and on what date will it fall?
Wonderful fun, I must tell you. Not only because guessing at little things like this is innately interesting, but also because of the enthusiasm it garnered and the joy it brought to our growing group of participants. Of course, this spurred some great fun during the day and naturally led to funny conversations, during which someone suggested I write a story about this. I smiled because I myself was loving the competition, and then she said it: the perfect, beautiful title. The title that I could not help to write down. The title that I knew had to be the nameplate of a story. The title I want to write a book about. And a new idea took shape.
Now, unfortunately I cannot share this title as the internet is a tricky thing and we all need to protect our work. But brainstorming with my other good friend later that afternoon, as I melded this beautiful title with a previous book scenario I have been kicking around, the idea morphed and changed and grew into something completely different. I scribbled and drew arrows and wrote all over several sticky notes. But the title remained. And a new idea stood strong.
Honestly, this new idea has nothing to do with my current project and really doesn't help me along in my revision in the slightest. It's not something that today I can do much with or something that will be easy to execute. It also must wait for my revision to be finished. But, that doesn't matter — because it was exciting. It gave me something to look forward to. It got my mind racing and ideas flowing. It made me remember how fun idea creation is; how fun writing is.
We all need the joy of a new idea now and again. Whether it comes in the middle of a current project or right when you need to start something new, that joy is necessary because it reminds us of the purest and more quintessential point of our writing — that we love stories and we want to make good ones.
So no matter what you're working on or how long you still have to go before starting something new, keep looking for that new idea. And cherish the joy when you find it. Because we need it — to remember why we love to do what we do.