Since I dropped the ball – again – for Prep Monday, and am having a hard time getting my act together for today’s bookstore post, my friend and colleague Janet Cannon graciously stepped in and offered the following blog post today for your reading pleasure:
For those of you who don’t know, MacGyver was this cool dude—played by Richard Dean Anderson on a TV show in the 80s—who could make a bomb out of bubble gum, a paper clip, and a click pen. He had the most amazing powers to take the ordinary and make it extraordinary by simply imagining what it could be and making it so. Even if he did have a mullet, we can forgive him, because he was drop-dead gorgeous anyway. Still is. And he was smart. Very smart.
However, not all of us have a 180 IQ. Writers are always looking for that cool factor when it comes to plot twists, character traits, and memorable settings, but we can’t detect always the laser tripwires with baby powder and cigarette smoke. The cliché becomes cliché. Sometimes we need other sources to help us break into the prison to free our ideas.
That’s why I’m always trolling the Internet for the next weird thing. Or an old weird thing. Or two weird things that people haven’t put together yet. The Internet is a great resource for putting together a house when you don’t have a builder’s permit.
Here are a few resources to try out. Enjoy!
http://www.stumbleupon.com/ Randomness galore!
http://www.howstuffworks.com/ Tells you how things work.
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/ Inspirational photos, crazy animals, and interesting characters.
http://www.mapmyrun.com/Create a map of your location based on a current place or measure out distances from real place to real place. Lots of cool uses.
http://www.theonion.com/ Goofy articles that may spark some writing ideas.
(Incidentally, Jan is one of RHP’s anthology authors – you can order your copy of Spirits of St. Louis: Missouri Ghost Stories HERE.)