Orson Scott Card once said: “Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.”
Story ideas abound in the world around us but all too often we’re so wrapped up in our world, in our tasks, we walk right by them. It’s like our perceivers are so focused on what we need to accomplish, they miss the wider world we are walking through.
Last week, I mentioned how seeing a truck pulling a Lincoln on a trailer gave me an idea that grew into a novel. If I had been driving that day instead of my wife, I might have missed that. I might have seen it as a possible threat to my driving: was he on the cell phone; would he switch into my lane without warning; etc. The story idea would have been missed. Or gone in different direction like a rant about how other drivers are all idiots; a rant that would have embarrassed me and not honored God.
When I see the geriatric delinquents at IHOP, what a wealth of stories they must hold. Stories of friendship, stories of heartbreak, stories of faith and love.
When I see a father with small children, I wonder what their stories are. Is it his custody weekend? Is it his date with his children, making sure he takes time from his life to be in theirs? Are they coping with a mother or a sibling who is ill or has died?
So many ideas, so many stories to tell, so many writers to tell them. If we’re called to write, the Lord has a plan for us, a plan to tell the stories He brings across our path. For some of us, it’s writing articles. For others, it’s devotionals or inspirational books. For others, it’s writing songs. For others, it’s using fiction to convey His Truth.
For all of us who write, it’s to minister to His people with our divinely inspired words.