January 3, 2011

A Writer's Life - When ideas attack

With ideas it's like with days. I try to take one at a time, but sometimes several will attack me at once. And they do so in often unexpected, sometimes inappropriate moments, yet always … alright, mostly … accompanied with the heavens opening up and light shining down on me. Angelic choirs are optional.

Not every single idea will find a way onto paper, but a lot do. Sometimes immediately. Then it takes years of brooding before I decide that an idea deserves a line, a chapter or a whole book.

Just like several ideas sneaking up on me and attacking like a pack of hounds who have trouble digesting their daily Shakespeare, I have this slightly annoying tendency to give in to working on several projects at a time. That's not to say I will sit here in front of two computers and writing with my left hand for my blog and with the right hand on a novel. Interesting picture though.
It's just that my attention tends to shift from one project/idea to the next rather easily and I often need to remind myself that finishing one might be a wise decision. But this is easier said than done. And if you've ever tried to argue with yourself … well, makes you feel like a bit of a schizophrenic talking to yourself if only in your mind. But who says that creative people have to be sane? In fact, creative people rarely are. Then again where's the fun in being sane anyway?

The good news is that I managed to agree with myself to concentrate on writing on a particular book right now. It's a thriller, the first dead body is already lying in the woods somewhere in Pennsylvania, and the main character is *tadaaa* an author. As paranoid as I can often be I don't think I'm giving away too much with these clues. What I do want to let you in on though, is the title.


That's the title of the book. In fact, this will be the title in every language if it ever gets translated. You see, I've got a thing for titles and the message they convey. I like to keep it brief and I like to keep it English. Granted, the latter might be a bit weird seeing as I write in German, but it all makes perfect sense once you've read the book. You know, those pages attached to the cover with the above mentioned title.

Come to think of it. I never quite understood how some writers will have so called “working titles” for their books. Either you have a title that wraps up the essence of your book. Or you don't. Of course you might argue that a book is mostly about the content and not just a few words on the cover. I see this a wee bit differently though. A title tells you a lot. An awful lot. Not just about the book, but also about the person who's written it. But I digress.

Where was I? Oh yes! Several ideas attacking at once.

All I'm going to say is that right now I'm torn between supporting or subduing my newest brainchild that hit me one fine evening last December when I was just trying to fall asleep. Oh, those sleepless nights of letting your mind wander through the magical woods of your imagination. The ever-present jetlag of the creative.

That's why I love taking naps.

Digressing again.

There's a dead body I need to deal with.
And an author on the run.
Not me though.
Then again ...


  1. They say to write about what you know. If you're writing about an author murdering people....well...

  2. Hahahaaa ... I hate to disappoint you, but the author is on the run for other reasons!!