Where do Ideas come from?
For me, my ideas usually come in the form of a title.
My first book, Putting the World to Sleep began as simply a phrase. A phrase I played with over and over again in my writing book until it felt done. Good Night, Good Knight was also just a a title first, before the story eventually revealed itself. (Yeah, I know, the first books dealt with trying to get to sleep....a huge issue in my life at the time, as a mommy of preschoolers).
Time goes so fast.
Still, sometimes, a title will come, begging to be written. But now, often, an Idea comes in the form of a premise. Like, for example, a tantrum that is contagious or a dungeon that exists under a school. I have a premise, but no title or characters. The title and characters come only after lots of failed attempts.....lots of tinkering......lots of playing around in the writing book. But there is already a center, an essence of the book........
Occasionally, I'll get an idea in the form of a character. This is the hardest for me. The character just kind of shows up in the old imagination (or on a page of the writing book) but it takes a lot of effort to extract the story from him or her. An example of this is one of my current projects, Chicken Wizard. Okay, so, it's a chicken that is a wizard....how cool is that? Well, it would be cool if he would tell me his story!! But instead, he just lies flatly on the page, doing nothing but looking dapper in his yellow feathers and wizard had......I think he has a wand, too. And there's an egg of destiny he has to do something with.....but right now, he is not feeling very divulging. He is sitting there with his beak closed tight.
Wish I had a wand.....