First, there needs to be an interesting idea or concept for a story. An image, and it usually is in the form of imagery, of some idea or concept springs from the subconscious mind, and depending on the energy the image brings with it, reveals itself to a writer as a possible story line.
Out of the solitary quietness of a walk along a deserted beach, the sight of a delicately assembled structure like the teepee fort can't fail to arrest one's attention. What sort of person(s) constructed this? Extrovert rather than introvert, likely; young, probably; feelings of insecurity, maybe; building sense, surely. Of course it would make for a neat twist in a story if the builder was someone completely unexpected, like an older woman, who lives nearby in her own home, on a small but adequate pension from her share of community property she got when she divorced her boring husband of thirty years. So why did she erect this teepee? It's intriguing me already. Don't steal this story!
Let's use the teepee metaphor a little further to explore the selection of elements needed to write the story. I'm currently reading "Letters to a Young Novelist," by the 2010 Nobel Prize winner for Literature, Mario Vargas Llhosa. I'm not so young, but never mind; it's interesting. Llhosa describes the elements one needs to decide on when setting out to write a story as:
- level of reality
More on Llhosa later.