Number Six: The Idea You Can’t Keep

Musings In Grayscale Issue #6


One of the most frustrating things about being a writer is coming up with ideas that are absolutely wonderful, so much so that you practically fall in love with them — only to realize they just don’t work where you want them to.  It is heartbreaking.  Maybe better writers than I can see an idea won’t work before they fall in love with it in the first place.  I wish I could.

It was my husband Joe who really helped me to understand that I didn’t have to throw out the ideas that wouldn’t work in the story they were in, that maybe they just belonged somewhere else.  That has made letting go of the ideas I love just a little easier.  They’re not bad.  Just misplaced.  I’m not bad — I just had a good idea at the wrong time.

Images Used

  • Panel 1: A Paper Camera selfie.  (Not easy to take a selfie with your hand over your eyes!)
  • Panel 2: A shot of the Smith River at its confluence with Patrick Creek, in far northern California.  Taken by me in 2007 and grayscaled.
  • Panel 3: A shot of a record and its sleeve. Taken by me in 2015 and grayscaled.  (I had purchased the record at Goodwill for the specific purpose of cutting it into guitar picks.  Sadly, it was a bit too thick to work well with my punch.)
  • Panel 4: Image from the National Library of France, found on Wikimedia Commons.  Public domain.
  • Panel 5: A coloring page from Deco Tech: Geometric Coloring Patterns by John Wik, colored by me, photographed then manipulated in Photoshop.
  • Panel 6: A shot taken by me at the 2004 IndyCar race at Portland International Raceway.  (The IndyCar series is coming back to Portland this year, after having been gone for a decade.  Yay!)