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Where do stories come from?

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Alex Grey View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (3) Thanks(3)   Quote Alex Grey Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Where do stories come from?
    Posted: 13 Apr 2019 at 10:02am
I was musing about my latest (non-comp) story this morning and was marvelling that this time last week, it didn't exist, neither did the 750 new stories that all the competitors have written for round 2.

What I found intriguing was that my story doesn't feel as if it's less than a week old; it feels as if it's been there forever - less something woven from the wind of imagination, but more something that was waiting to be found under whatever sands bury these tales, like Pompeii under the ashes or Atlantis under the sea.

I could tell you where I've picked up the scraps and snippets that have contributed to my stories, but I'm still awed that there are now 4,500+ new tales here now that weren't here last year; or that there are 750+ new stories here today that were just scribbled drafts this time last week.

Creative writing is an unrecognised miracle don't you think? :-)

NON-COMPThe Hunted
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote beadbalm Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Apr 2019 at 11:44am
That really is a fun way to look at it. If not for this contest, there would be less in the world. And proof of creativity is about an esoteric concept as there is (it's not food, nor money, you can't touch it, and it doesn't keep the rain off your head). 
You are going from the angle that the sculptor is just revealing the statue beneath, that it was always there, just not apparent. I think that every writer has a few of these blocks sitting around.
I also like to think that stories are like random chemical reactions. Throw some elements together and with the right circumstances, they make water and diamonds. Depending on what we know and what we experience (and what the weather is like), we will have a different end-product. Maybe bananas.
Either way, bringing beauty into the world is certainly a little bit like a miracle.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote awayatpost Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Apr 2019 at 12:02pm
...And, you never know what small but resonating impact they're going to have after they separate from you and are launched into the world. Your observation, for example: right now I'm contemplating a huge career change from two decades in a "useful" profession (that I've come to absolutely loathe) to getting a creative writing MFA. One of the biggest obstacles: it's been hard for me not to see it as completely self-indulgent; it's hard to argue that the world really needs more stories. Except that you just did, and did it well. So, thanks for that...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LyndaD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Apr 2019 at 8:08pm
I tell my students this. When they write a short story,  they're creating something brand new that has never existed before.  I argued this with one of our district admins, who was insisting that a narrative writing assignment didn't require higher level thinking skills.Confused
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lisa_Who Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Apr 2019 at 8:28pm
My husband asked me the other day: "Do you think you'll ever run out of stories?"  

...no, I don't think so.  I don't think one does ever run out of stories.  Everything that happens every minute of every day, is a story.  Everyone who passes by me on the highway, every day I'm commuting back and forth from work, is a story.  Every snatch of music that I hear is a story.  How is it even possible, to run out of stories..? 

But I think, if you don't create them yourself, in your head, all the time...it might be hard to understand that there's not somehow a finite supply of them in someone else's.  

Thank you for the opportunity to muse upon this! :) 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Alex Grey Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Apr 2019 at 5:35am
Originally posted by awayatpost awayatpost wrote:

...And, you never know what small but resonating impact they're going to have after they separate from you and are launched into the world. Your observation, for example: right now I'm contemplating a huge career change from two decades in a "useful" profession (that I've come to absolutely loathe) to getting a creative writing MFA. One of the biggest obstacles: it's been hard for me not to see it as completely self-indulgent; it's hard to argue that the world really needs more stories. Except that you just did, and did it well. So, thanks for that...


I was so touched by this reply - I don't know your circumstances, but my instinct says "go for it" - I'm at a stage in life where I'm more likely to ask "why not" than "why" - it's opened some surprising doors for me, though I've got no intention of going wild and taking up extreme sports! I wish you the very best of luck i.e. the happy confluence of opportunity and preparation.

Your Round 2 story is on my "read" list - I am so easily drawn by a Shakesperean theme :-)
NON-COMPThe Hunted
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