Sunday, June 6, 2010

Business Plan Part 9 - Protecting Your Creativity

Currently reading - Infinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon

"Where do you get your ideas?" is the most common question I hear folks ask writers. While I like Neil Gaiman's answer ("The clearance aisle at Wal-Mart."), I don't think people would truly understand if I tried to explain my method. And even if I could explain, how would they take it?

As I've said, I'm in the process of cleaning out my office. Today, I started going through a box of old books and magazines, mainly stuff from when I was eleven or twelve. Stories from Lovecraft, Asimov and Bradbury. Homer's The Odyssey. Horror comics and superhero comcis. Articles about favorite movie and TV stars. Movie stubs from Star Wars and Superman. Then I toss in the idiosyncracies of the people I see in real life. All of that congeals and melds in the subconscious until something relatively new emerges.

But in today's litigious society, you can't be totally honest. Otherwise, someone claims you stole their idea or worse, claims you're defaming them.

So protect your creativity. Keep your mouth shut except for a few trusted friends. Both you and your pocketbook will be better off.

Honestly, your Honor, my heroine's mother is not based on my mother. My mother wouldn't be caught dead carrying a live dog in her purse.

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