Monday, August 15, 2016

BRAIN FREEZE!

I've published eleven children's/tween books to date, and have been trying to go for an even dozen. The problem is that #12 is like giving birth to a 12 lb. baby, painfully frustrating! Now I can honestly say that while I've never produced an infant of that size, I can only imagine. Matter of fact, I'm not going to let my mind go there since, for me, the visuals alone would be terrifying!

The working title for this practically non-existent book is 'If I Were You And You Were Me.' The underlying concept is centered around the idea of what it would be like if suddenly an older person was young again, and a kid became old overnight. After a series of episodes in each of their daily lives as the 'other one', it would be clear to both of them that they'd be totally content to be who they are in reality.

The problem I'm having is that after outlining the scenario, I've developed a terrible case of BRAIN FREEZE! Trying to come up with daily activities that are true to life while exuding humor and compassion, AND ultimately present the case that each stage of our existence has its pros and cons has been challenging to say the least.

Okay, so going from old to young surely would have its benefits. Your energies would be through the roof, you'd have a strong, agile body that could leap tall buildings in a single bound, and you wouldn't lack for a bevy of friends who were constantly available to join you for frolic and fun. BUT, being young, your independence would be greatly curtailed by those overbearing people you call your parents, you'd be enslaved by weekly household chores, and be imprisoned daily in a classroom for six or more hours depending on your grade level. To further add to your misery, you'd have a ton of homework to complete, the actual amount again dependent on your current grade level. Perhaps the final insult for you would be that you had to adhere to a set bedtime determined by those same overbearing people you call your parents!

Now let's examine the seemingly disastrous phenomenon of going from young to old. You'd wake up slowly, slowly drag yourself to the kitchen for your morning cup of coffee, read the newspaper from cover to cover...slowly, wash up and get dressed in no particular hurry and have the rest of the day to figure out as it slowly unfolded. Maybe you'd take the dog for a walk or putter in the garden. Maybe you'd clean out a cupboard, or hem a pair of pants, or maybe not. Depressing? Perhaps until you realize that being old also has its benefits. You'd be able to do whatever you wanted whenever you wanted. There'd be nobody to tell you what to do and when it needed to be done. You wouldn't be enslaved or imprisoned by familial or societal demands. You could nap at two in the afternoon, and go to bed at two a.m.

Well what do you know, after lamenting over having a bad case of writer's BRAIN FREEZE, I've managed to put down two paragraphs that contain possible ideas I can implement in the new book.

That just goes to show you that the only way to melt a writer's BRAIN FREEZE is to take it out of the freezer and start writing. By jotting down random thoughts that don't seem to have any connection will eventually begin to help formulate a concept and expand it into a great story. I should know, it's happened to me at least eleven times!