Posted by: steveonfilm | May 31, 2011

The Idea Box

I’ve got this idea I’m going to start tinkering with while I work on my polishing of ‘The Prey.’ It’s an idea that I’ve had in my head for at least a year now. I’ve written about it a little bit on the site, but have always been hesitatant to try my hand as putting down on paper. Then I read this on Screenwriting Tips… You Hack:

“Remember when you were a kid and movies were beautiful, frightening and transformative? Forget the rest of the world and write for that kid.”

That was all I needed to see to know what I was going to write next.

But right now this idea is just that… an idea. I’ve got a concept. A few lines. A general realization of a world. The vaguest idea of ending and the character who the story is based around. But it’s nothing I could start cracking away with.

I decided to try something I read about recently to brainstorm. I’m going to jot down anything that comes to mind for a potential scene in a story. A big beat. A small bit. A line of dialog. A setting. An element of backstory. Whatever comes up. It’s all going to go onto an index card. And I’ll keep creating cards until I’ve got nothing left to write down. Then, I’m going to look at what I have, and organize things, and see if I’ve got a story.

It sounds weird. It is. It might not work. But it’s an idea that I’m excited about trying.

Until next time, keep writing!


  1. I’ve never used index cards but one instructor suggested doing just that. I’m just such a linear writer that I’ll write story beats down for each scene and then flesh them out once I’ve gotten to the end.

    Maybe one of these days I’ll try index cards.

    • I don’t like using index cards for outlining. Mainly because I don’t like writing by hand. But I’m trying this out as a brain storming experiment. So we’ll see how it goes.

  2. Good ideas Steve. As always, thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks Bob.

      I’ll keep you posted with how the experiement goes.

      How’s the writing coming along for you?

  3. Hi Steve,
    Thanks for asking about how my writing is coming. To tell you the truth, I haven’t been lately. I have some priorities that I have been occupied with. I could find the time, but writing sometimes takes me to a weird place, and I feel I need to have my head grounded in reality right now. Ever get that?

    • I can relate on the ‘priorities’ thing. Lord knows how busy you must be as a lawyer.

      As for the weird place thing… can’t say I can relate there. Writing is a very private experience, regardless of the type of writing that it is. Everyone gets something different out of it.

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