Wednesday, August 17, 2011


Writers often are told to ask the magical question “What if?” What if a character does such and such? What if this or that happens in the story? What if….

Another question we might ask is “Why?” Why do I (you may disagree with me and have your own why questions, but these are mine) think butterflies, moths, and dragonflies are pretty, but flies, mosquitoes, and yellow jackets are yucky?

Why do I like walking sticks, praying mantis, and lady bugs, but wish grasshoppers, roaches, and ants would cease to exist?

Why do scorpions give me the creeps yet garden spiders, with their iridescent coloring, fascinate me?

Why do I love dandelions and wild verbena and don’t mow them down when most people call them weeds and get rid of them in a hurry?

Why do I think hummingbirds, orioles, bludjays, scissortails, hawks, and kites are pretty birds, but shoo crows and grackles away from my feeders?

Why are thunder storms exciting to me, but tornadoes send me running for shelter?

Why do the stars sparkle silver when they’re really red balls of fire?

Why? Why? Why?

Do I sound like a child wanting to know how things work? If so, great, because asking “Why?” can lead to all kinds of exciting possibilities for our stories.

So while you ask “What if?” also ask “Why?” and see where the answers take you.

I’m now off to discover “Why?” that stupid synopsis is so hard to write.

Oh, and thinking about the above it may be possible that some of the items I dislike are harmful. Does this influence my thinking? Probably.

What are your “Why?” questions?

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