I’m curious if there are others like me who have an ever expanding story idea collection. I can’t help it. All the time I see something or read something that gives me an idea for what I’m either currently writing or a whole new idea altogether.
I tend to work on several writing projects interchangeably. It’s just how my mind works. I have trouble focusing solely on a single project without getting inspiration on others at the same time. I do find there is always one story that is predominantly my main focus, but the others are always there on the edges of my mind slowly tumbling in my subconscious as I work through whatever plot threads I’m trying to weave together.
To that point, I have a few stories within the same project that focus on different characters. At the moment short stories I hope to expand into a wider project. For a while now I’ve been treating them all as separate individual story threads. But recently I had the brainstorm (I’m not sure why it took me so long to come to this idea) to figure out how these threads could be braided together or at least figure out where they all fit in the grand timeline of the overall world I’ve been building for nearly a decade. I think I finally stopped thinking of them as isolated self-contained plots and realized that, yes, they are all in the same story world and, yes, they do each have events that are linked from one to the other. Not every thread links to every other mind you, but one links to another which then links to two more and so on.
—The stories for each character all happen after a major story arc from the core story which then split the cast of characters. I was exploring what happened to each character in the time before they find their way back to each other again, which spanned a few year in story time.
Two questions, (1) Do you focus on only one or many stories at a time; on occasion rotating your main focus? I find OneNote from Microsoft helps a lot in keeping my scatterplot of a writing mind organized. And (2) have you had an ‘ah-ha!’ moment in your writing that you feel makes so much sense that you’re surprised you didn’t think of it earlier?