Where Do Stories Come From?

Volumes can be written on this subject.

A writer hears or sees something that moves or touches them and allows the creative story telling ability to take over. The storyteller sees the world and explains it through a narrative. Not everybody can do that. Some might think it’s a gift, however it’s more like a quirk; in that, another can grab a pencil and sketch what they see, while another can tear down an engine and put it back together. Okay, if you insist, call it a gift.

Many years ago, a writer said to me, “Everyone is a writer. Have you ever watched a movie and said, ‘I think she should have married the other guy,’ or ‘I would have ended the movie like this…’ If you have done that, you are a writer.” There is sort of a profound truth to that, but it’s not quite that easy.

The best any of us can do is speculate where stories come from. Writers sometimes see the chaos in the world and try to rearrange it so it makes sense. It was Mark Twain who said, “It’s no wonder truth is stranger than fiction, fiction has to make sense.” In there limited way, writers try to put meaning to life through events. When you stop to really think about it, that is a heavy load and should not be taken lightly when setting thoughts in words that may be published.

Stories are made up of conflict and resolution. One can take an everyday event, reshape it, create a conflict, and resolve it. The writer within makes such things meaningful and memorable by the way he writes.

Where Do Stories Come From? They come from an observation and experience of the life around the writer and polished into a meaningful narrative.


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