Sep 14, 2010

Non Story Post :: The Science Of An Idea

Negative thinking is not good for your health or for the health of those around you, but negative thinking can be a great hub of ideas for writers who are looking for ideas.


Negative thinking means some kind of conflict, some kind of disturbance in the normal course of things. What is a comet was heading towards Earth right now? What if there is a girl in a white frock standing behind my chair this instant? What if a full convoy of commandos are coming to pick me up and take me to an unspecified location? These are all great what if scenarios. If you put some x,y,z character in a strange fix, a physical dilemma or even a moral one and then find a way out which the reader could not think of, you have a winner on your hands.

This is the way stories are written. When you, a writer, put your characters in hot water, you are putting your readers in hot water too, and then when you take the characters out of hot water because of some Deus-ex-machinia, then the readers also feel relieved. This is the reason why people watch horror/disaster movies. Because they want a positive resolution. They want the fake voice of hope in their hearts to be true. That's fiction, but it's good fiction and it sells. And what sells and puts food on your table and pays the bills, no matter how shitty the product, must be good.

Right? I hope so.

Now let me deal with this girl in white standing behind my chair.

Comments are open for discussion.

How do you come up with ideas?

Are positive resolutions to stories the only way to go?

Anything else you'd like to discuss?



  1. Doesn't a not so happy ending to a story leaves the Readers Dry and high, I mean a Happy ending brings a certain type of Satisafation of reading something Nice.

  2. at the end we all want to feel good,

  3. This could be a long discussion...but you are absolutely right. Unless a conflict of some kind there is no point in developing a story (even the stream of consciousness pieces evolves round some opposites). As for the positive end, here comes the so-called "para-literature" or "consumption literature". Terms that I hate, as it is not easy to do a commercial thing (including horror, thriller, etc). There are just a few "elite" writers in this world who could manage to write decent commercial stuff and they all admitted the experience was horrible. I guess I am out of the topic now. LOL Yes, negative occurrences are a must, hence negative thinking, too, at least for writers... :) Conclusion, give the bitch in white the chance to scare the hell out of us. :P

  4. Yes. Awesome things, like rock and roll, writing are an outcome of negative impulses in the brain.

    But sometimes things get out of hand. You tend to be in a permanent state of negativity. You feel good in feeling bad. That's bad.