Ever since I began writing children’s stories, I don’t think my brain has had a rest. I toss and turn at night racking my brain to come up with that perfect story line. You know, the one that will be as good as Alice in Wonderland, or Pinkalicious, or even one like the Farting Dog! Just something that is clever and original. That’s all I’m asking my brain to do. Is that so much to ask for?

Apparently so because even though I’m having my first picture book published soon, I still feel like my brain should be coming up with something better. Sometimes I feel as though I’m going insane because I wake up in the morning thinking about stories. I drive to work thinking about stories. I’m in a meeting thinking about stories. I sit outside just to enjoy the sunshine and play with my dogs and there I am… thinking about stories.

My new years resolution for this year was to stop watching so much TV and read more. So far, I’m doing ok with that except right in the middle of a book I’m reading, what do you think happens? Yep, you guessed it… my brain starts wandering and I’m back to thinking about my next story.

With all this brain storming you’d think I’d be able to just turn on the computer, start typing and a great story would magically come out. Well guess again. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve just stared at the computer, unable to think of one thing to write.

I actually have found that my best story ideas have come to me while I’m driving my car on my way home from work. Is that insane or what not to mention not very safe driving since my mind is on a story idea versus where I’m going!

Do you have a best place or time in which your brain functions best and your stories start to flow from you? If so, I’d love to hear about them.


  1. Um, in the shower and on the treadmill. Both relax me (yeah, I know relaxing and running is a little weird) and make my mind open to creativity. I've run off the treadmill and to my notebook to jot down ideas. (Running from the treadmill--yes, I see the irony.) I've gotten my notebooks wet because I don't even properly dry off before I dash for my pen and paper.

    One thing I try when I can't write is to simply brainstorm. I did that yesterday with a short story I've been trying to write for months. I just opened to a blank screen and brainstormed ideas. About halfway through, I realized I wasn't brainstorming any more. I was writing. I had dialogue and a plot. I went back and converted my brainstorming to the opening of my story and there it was. My story was drafted from start to finish. Try it. It may work for you too.

  2. i was about to write in the shower and on the treadmill as well! ;) times away from my kids, although, staying with them makes me talk in catchy rhymes at all times in a way that Dr. Seuss would love ;)

  3. Funny, even though I'm not really a writer, I was about to post the same thing that Kelly and Caroline both said (I read the comments after thinking about it.) My best thinking and problem solving occurs in the I will worry a problem to death with no solution, wake up the next day, step into the shower and the solution will hit me. I assume it's because it's a very clear, relaxing place to think, plus I'm not consciously thinking TOO hard, so good ideas and solution flow into my head during that time.

    I'm thinking that maybe I should spend about 8 hours a day in the shower....and I'll get LOTS done!

  4. And you'll be extra clean, too, Mark!!

  5. I just found your excellent blog! My ideas come at the strangest moments as well, driving, doing errands, showering, and exercising like many of you have mentioned. I've also woken up from dreams in the middle of the night with story characters, plot, or dialog I just had to write down before I lose them...and when I wait to long, I often do forget the ideas. 
    Now I have a recorder in my car, and a notebook and pen in my purse and by my bed. That way I can catch the inspiration when it strikes!

  6. Thanks Blanche, for your comments and following my blog. Am I following you as well?
    I also have a recorder that I'm supposed to be leaving in my car but keep forgetting to put it back once I take it inside and listen to it so I can jot down my ideas. Geez... this writing business sure requires us to use our memories alot, which I have little to none of.