Monday, February 1, 2010

Special Guest Post

Today we have a guest post.  Hope you enjoy.

Wolf Althuis is an up and coming writer living in Southwest Idaho. His work is currently gracing the desks of editors around the nation and will soon be in print. Just ask him. Check out his blog at The Wulver's Stane. 


If you hang around a writers group long enough you’re bound to hear a million questions. One of my favorite questions to hear is this…

You thought up what?! Where did that come from?

Not only is it a good question, but it’s one I find infinitely entertaining. Otherwise I wouldn’t be a writer. So where do we get our ideas and how on earth do you take one and make it into a story?

The simple response is you ask questions. A LOT of questions.

Take for instance a common day object, lets say a pen. Why a pen? Because it was the first thing I saw when I looked away from the screen. :o) So what? A pen is boring how can this turn into a story? Lets see.

Why is this pen important? Is it a normal pen? Obviously not . Ok then what makes it special? Is it sentient? No, too many talking pens out there. Is it magic? No, again to common. Is it about to murder that lying S.O.B. of a boss? Hmmm. Sure.

Ok so now we know the story is about a boss who gets murdered. That leads to a number of question. Who is doing the killing? Apparently an underling. Or maybe the spouse of an underling, or even more disturbing perhaps the child of an underling. :o) I like it. It’s creepy and not your normal murderer. But for PC reasons lets say the child is an adult.

Alright why would an adult child want to kill his parents boss? Did the boss fire the parent? Maybe, lets keep that one on the shelf. Did the boss kill the parent? No, to expected, tit for tat and all. Did the boss seduce the parent and break up the family? No, too many broken family stories out there for my taste.

Lets go back to firing.

Why would that be grounds for murder? The child is an adult so why do they need their parents to be employed? Are they mentally challenged and cant support themselves? Maybe. Are they fully competent but can’t get a job due to the economy? I like that one. Its something everyone can relate to, especially now.

So why would a fully competent man kill his fathers boss? Perhaps he has a family of his own that won’t survive… Nah. There’s too much help to keep food on the table. Maybe his marriage is in trouble and his wife is gonna leave him if money isn’t coming in. Sure lets do that

How, if she’s like that, would the father have been giving the money to the son? Maybe the son was working for the father? Or perhaps the two were keeping up the facade that the son never lost his job and now its gonna come out? Alright.

So now we have a Man who has been forced to lie to his wife to stay together. And all the stress from being jobless, lying to the wife, and being forced to take charity from his father have just culminated in the collapsing of his act and imminent failure of his marriage. He snaps and targets the perceived cause of it all. The boss(Maybe father and son worked at the same firm?) and decides to kill the S.O.B with his own lavish fountain pen.

All from looking at a Bic pen and asking questions. Granted its not the best story seed, but it gives you an idea of where all this comes from. Just keep the idea net open and keep asking questions.


Wolf Althuis said...

Hello all! I hope you enjoyed the post and will let me know what you thought.

Oh and if any of you are murderous, soon-to-be divorced people, It was his fault. ------>


V.R. Leavitt said...

Great!! I love finding out how other people's brains generate these ideas if for no other reason that it makes me know I'm not crazy. Or if I am, I'm in good company. :-)

Jean said...

It was an accident. I tripped over a wrinkle in the carpet and the pen just happened to stab him in the eye and go into his brain.

The fact that he couldn't keep his hands to himself while I took dictation had nothing to do with it. Honest!

JoElle Martín said...

It's nice to see that mine isn't the only brain that goes off and leaves me behind when that first "what if" happens.

I saw an entrancing homeless man once ... it turned into a 80,000 word romance novel.

It didn't start with a "what if" though. It started with a "I wonder what".

Great blog, Wolfie!!

Sandra said...

I wish my brain worked this way! That was wonderful, Wolf.

Anonymous said...


I have a question for the webmaster/admin here at

May I use some of the information from this post right above if I provide a link back to your site?


Jean said...

Sure...just provide a link coming back here.

Wolf Althuis said...

Hi Jules,
I'd love to see a link to what you're putting up. Can you put a link here so I can check it out. I'd appreciate it.

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