Often, when it’s revealed that I’m an author, people ask how I come up with ideas for stories. My answer is that usually that they just pop into my brain. That I can’t stop them and just have to keep a constantly growing list.
At this point in the conversation, my wife takes note of their confused expressions and explains that it seems to be an odd quirk of my odd brain. As she’s witnessed it first hand countless times during out marriage she’s kind of an expert on my weirdness.
But basically it’s just imagination, which is a constant, never ending stream of what if questions. What if something lived deep in the Adirondack mountains that might like to munch on the occasional hunter or hiker? What if Native Americans and other First people were right that spirits inhabit rocks, rivers, marshes and mountains? What if Bigfoot is the real smart ape and finds it easy to just mostly avoid us?What if life is just a virtual reality game provided by God? What if something lives in the walls of our homes that feeds on socks (just one at a time)?
It’s questions like those watered liberally with new knowledge. My wife says I’m an information junkie, that my brain is addicted to new, often useless information. I like movies and television, I read the news, surf the web and read books — a lot! And I never learned to turn off my imagination which most grownups learn sometime between high school and marriage. Thank goodness for that.