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You just woke up from a dream, or you were out walking, and something extraordinary happened…
…a story idea popped into your mind. That one idea continued to evolve, and now you feel excited to write a book.
Let's fast forward to that moment when you scrolled on social media and continued that scroll on a popular book site. While scrolling, you noticed several books with the same story idea as the one you had just thought of earlier.
You're ready to give up. What's the point of writing a book if the idea has already been written?
Wait, don't throw your notes away just yet; there are several reasons why you should start writing that amazing story.
When I started writing, I would think of story ideas and then ignore them. What was the point of writing a book when the story had already been told?
It's funny because once I unleashed the first story idea, it was like I had opened the floodgates for so many more. Yet, I was uncomfortable with sharing the stories.
There was always that fear I was copying someone. As a new author, it was easier to avoid upsetting someone.
Then someone shared a fact with me…
Did you know there are only like six story ideas out there? That number may be skewed, but it's still a low number.
And yes, I did only say six.
That means millions of books out there play off of six-story arcs.
Does that mean there are tons of books with the same ideas right now?
Writing is so exciting when you think about how we all work off essentially the same story ideas, and yet, we create our own unique stories.
It's true when someone writes a book, they are writing their idea. That book will have their thoughts, opinions, styles, and even pieces of their life.
There is no way I could copy your book because it's unique to you and how you wrote the story. The same goes for my books; you can't copy the ideas in my mind.
I guess you could say that's what makes storytelling so beautiful.
Let's think of it another way– You don't have the same passions as me. When I write a book, my passions come out on each page. For example, I'm a food blogger and love creating recipes from scratch.
In the last book I wrote, there was so much food talk. Seriously, I shared recipes, drooled over favorite menu items, and the characters reminisced about foods from their hometown.
Yes, I love talking about food in my books, and yes, I get hungry after every writing session.
More importantly, though, how I write about topics will never be the same as how you write. So even if the idea feels the same, the story itself will never be the same.
Characters will take different paths. Scenes will play out differently. Everything we talk about will be different.
The biggest reason for our story differences, your passions are not the same as mine or another author's.
Each story is unique to that individual writer.
So uncrumple that piece of paper or bring the note out of the deleted section on your phone; it's time to write your story.
This would be when I open my favorite writing tool to start planning and plotting for the awesome story idea.
If you need a place to write your story, I've used Scrivener for almost 30 of my books. It's the best writing tool available, in my opinion.
Now that you have your writing tool open, you're ready to start.
My mind is returning to the first time I started writing my book. It was easy to think about the story and what I wanted to write. When it came time actually to write words, I had every excuse in the book not to do the thing.
This may be the moment when we need a little help from the inspiration fairies.
Here are three ways to find inspiration to get you excited to write:
Reading. Read all the books you love and then read some more. It's incredible how books will create thoughts and ideas for your own story.
Connect with friends and family. Sometimes human interaction can help spark new ideas for your story. When you see those new ideas, you have that drive to write some words.
Watch movies or your favorite TV show. It's such a great feeling when you're watching a favorite show, and one little scene or maybe a simple sentence will help you think of ideas for your own story.
Reading is the reason I'm on this journey.
Before becoming a full-time writer, my job required me to travel extensively. I listened to so many audiobooks. So many.
I remember feeling inspired, excited, and curious after reading several books.
The day I discovered Susan Mallery's series Fool's Gold, it changed my life. Montana and Simon in Only Yours are still my favorite characters. They are also why I decided to move past my barriers and write a book.
TV and movies have sparked so many ideas for me over the years.
When I first started writing, I only planned to write contemporary romance novels. Then I found the TV series Flashpoint, and all those plans quickly disappeared.
One night I woke up from a dream, and I couldn't shake it. I could see the characters perfectly in my mind. The funny part, though, was I knew it wasn't a simple story. I knew it had to be a romantic suspense book.
That TV series is why I wrote my first romantic suspense trilogy. I had so much fun creating the characters and writing all the gritty, intense scenes.
We may be writers, but we're also creatives. The way our minds wander to other worlds is magical. Not everyone can create how we do, which is exciting.
And yes, it's okay to use inspiration around you to help create that beautiful story begging to be told. Even after watching your favorite show or reading your favorite book, you will never share their story because it's not the story inside of you.
The story inside of you holds all your passions, and so you were the only one meant to share that story with the world.
So ignore the noise and do the thing you keep thinking about.
What book inspired your story idea? (Share in the comments below.)
Learn how to use the best writing tool for your amazing story. You can grab the Get Started With Scrivener course here. It will take you under 50 minutes to learn and then start your story.
In our daily emails, I love to share stories about what happened in my day and then talk about how it all relates to creating a story.
Example: That time I used a coffee mug to serve wine and I worried about what my friends would say, OR the way my garden looked when we moved with all the layers of overgrown weeds. Yes, those moments are just like our stories and how we see or feel about them.