Happy Friday, writing friends!
Lately, I’ve been looking at the calls for submissions for a number of anthologies. A funny thing happens almost every single time. I’ll read the theme of the anthology and immediately think: I could write something about that!
Of course, many times the second thought that pops into my head is: “Drat! I don’t have enough time to get something together before the deadline.”
Last week, I had a third thought. A radical thought. A “why didn’t I think of that before?” thought: “So what if I can’t make the deadline? I ought to write that story anyway!”
I did a free-writing exercise using the idea the next day. Lo and behold! A story was born. It’s ugly, smells funny, and needs someone to clean it up and make it presentable, but it’s born. And birthing ideas is one of the things these assignments are good for.
This weekend, Google “Anthology call for submissions” (keep the quotes). You’ll find anthologies for poetry, nonfiction, and fiction–in every flavor you can imagine. Choose one that sparks your interest and write for it. Remember, for this exercise, the deadline doesn’t matter, so don’t discount the old listings if the theme appeals to you. The important thing is birthing the idea. Brainstorm, freewrite, whatever you do that works for you, do it.