It was a dark and stormy night…

No matter how cliche it is, I’ve always liked the idea of a story starting off with, “It was a dark and stormy night…”

Here’s the brief history of the phrase on Wikipedia, if you’re interested. I skimmed, to be honest.

Clicky-clicky!

So there’s that.

But let’s look at this a little more deeply. I’m writing this the night I got home from running from a tornado that was thinking about dropping on my college (meaning Friday, March 2). It was so legit that my school shut down at 12:30 (sending the notice out over an hour before that), a place that never shuts down for anything. And that got me thinking about weather and writing.

Look outside right now. If it’s not raining, step outside for a few minutes and write about how the weather makes you feel. Then write a scene inspired by said weather. It doesn’t have to be the same location–just inspired by the weather. Heck, you don’t have to include the weather you experience. It can simply exude the feeling of the weather. That might make it more creative, honestly.

Have you ever done something like that before? Let your surroundings influence what you write. Find as many different types of locales and climates and whatever as you can and write in them. You don’t have to spend a long time there if you don’t have time. Just spend a few minutes feeling your surroundings and then a few more write something inspired by them.

And don’t cheat. Don’t feel the surrounding and write later. Even if you come up with the best idea ever, it just won’t work if you wait to write it. Take initiative. This is your writing we’re talking about here. Important stuff. Don’t take it lightly.

So go outside when you can and do some writing. What did you come up with? (Send it to my inbox! :D)

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