Thursday, June 12, 2003

Last Sunday, on the ride home from my uncle's birthday, I conceived a plot. A story idea formed in my head, and it was good enough to me that it made me happy. This should happen now and then, if one fancies oneself a storyteller, but for the life of me I couldn't remember the last time. It has no ending, and it's difficult to come up with one that isn't either a) cliché or b) predictable, so it's a challenge. But one I welcome wholeheartedly. The challenge should be part of the fun. You have to one-up yourself, come up with an idea that will surprise you and delight you.

And just tonight, I got another story idea, though it's actually less of an idea, more of an ending, to be honest. So it kind of complements my Sunday idea. I got a book on Film Noir because I wanted to research on the subject; one of my dream films is a noir, but with a few tricks up its sleeve. I've had notes on this project since freshman college, but flipping through the book I came up with a better, more fitting ending than the one I already had. But I still like that original ending, it's just less potent in the previous context. So I've to come up with a new one for it since I like it so much. So it actually splits my project into two noirs now. Cool, no?

Anyway, what I'm getting at is the sheer elation and joy that comes with stumbling upon an idea. After getting the idea in the car, the whole rest of the ride home I had a stupid grin on my face, and I texted Neva immediately, I was so excited. You feel like laughing out loud, like a child. Your senses become hyper-acute for a few minutes. You're not aware of the stupid grin on your face. Your eyes will twinkle with possibilities and your head will spin with choices and directions. It is the best high, better than anything I can imagine any psychedelic drug's effects to be. The creation of something from nothing.

It can cheer me up for days. Most of the time I'm gloomy.

It reminds me of something Steven Soderbergh said. It was an interview after he'd won his Oscars for Traffic. He was on a hot streak, what with Out of Sight, The Limey, Erin Brockovich, and Traffic. His next project was Ocean's Eleven, to be followed immediately by Full Frontal and Solaris. Talking about the awards and accolades he'd received for his work, Soderbergh said "I'd give it all up for a dash of inspiration." And when you have those ideas, you'll completely understand that sentence. And if you've already had those moments of ideas, and you still don't understand what he said, then you probably never will.

Mind you, I'm not saying these two ideas I've had recently are great to anybody other than me. They made me happy, giddy like a schoolboy; that's enough. I really hope I live to be forty. Hopefully by then I'll have gotten these three ideas out of my system.

I really need to organize these story ideas, though. I've lost dozens of them to the ether out of sheer laziness. I didn't jot them down. Never trust your memory to do what it should, because when it doesn't, you won't even know about it. I hope one day that these Lost Ideas return to me, though, more mature, better, stronger from their time in Ideaspace.

Hm. This turned out to be longer than I thought. What I was getting at was that I haven't felt very creative in a long, long time. And I'm quite happy that the Sunday idea is not the kind of thing I usually come up with. So there.


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