Nathan Fillion (@NathanFillion) posted this on Twotter today: “Things that inspire you? Me: beautiful weather. Catchy music. Incredible scenery. Clouds.”

Yes, those are quite inspirational, but those belong to Mr. Fillion. I started to respond right away, but held off, thinking I needed time to think about it.

I don’t, really. I just need to ask myself, when do I feel most creative, most like grabbing the laptop and clicking away?

After a walk under a starry sky.

After an argument with a lover.

When I’ve read a fantastic story by a talented writer.

When I’ve had a vivid dream.

In the presence of a remarkable sight of nature, particularly mountains or oceans.

During a rain shower or storm.

On a long drive by myself. (Please note, this is when I feel inspired, not when I actually grab the laptop.)

In the shower.

Lots of places/times listed here, I don’t really make enough time regularly to write, yet I freely call myself a writer. Why is that?

Plenty of reasons, I suppose. Too many real-world distractions. Not enough condifence in my abilities. Yep, those are the big ones. I’m going to combat them with something small.

I’ve discovered a Twitter community, a group who write very short stories and tag them #vss. I have joined this community with a few tweets of my own. My goal now is to contribute at least one #vss per day.

It’s not easy to write a real story in 135 characters. You can set a scene, but that’s a setting, not a plot. I like the challenge of trying to, at minimum, imply or suggest a full story: character, setting, conflict, resolution. I’ve always felt the best stories were those that engaged the reader in creating those, so this is a good medium for me to try to develop writerly habits in.

I’ll post a copy of the tweets here each day. Maybe I’ll expound on my vision of the story; maybe I won’t. I don’t expect I’ll really “feel” each #vss. I’ve already posted one that I thought was a wild idea, but don’t expect to carry anywhere, so I’m not going to follow up on each one. The idea is to get the creative juices going, and find a few gems.

Alright. So I’ll wrap up with a copy of those I’ve done so far:

1999, in a JITB drive-thru, @stamirodan asked, “why are we still here?” last night, different JITB drive-thru, asked myself the same thing.

The fan across the room was more attentive to my tears than you, next to me. You pretended not to see so you wouldn’t have to hear why. #vss

Drove dark country highways for hours, pulled into the first bar in the first bowl of city lights, and shot the first man she saw. #vss

She’d spent a lifetime fearing the rain. Now it was her best defense against a league of nightmarish sugary monsters come to life. #vss

“Do you know why the sunsets are so brilliant here?” I asked. “No,” she said whimsically. “I like the mystery of seeing & not knowing.” #vss


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