I have to admit that I love this saying! It's so amazingly true. As a teacher, I like to take characteristics of my students, mash them together, and make new people. It's always fun when you're creating a nice person, but it's SO much more fun when creating a crazy. Crazy characters keep me on the edge of my seat. I think it's because I can always relate on some level. I remember when I was writing Love and Texts I harnessed my inner high school girl and actually turned my girl into a bit of a stalker. Haven't we all done a little stalking at one point or another? When I was in high school, 20 years ago, we didn't have technology, so we did the more obvious things. Driving by their house hoping he might be getting the mail or something. Calling and hanging up when he answered the phone, just to hear his voice. Walking a different path to class just to see him in the halls. There were so many ways. I know. I know. I sound a little coo coo, but it is the sad truth.
Today, I hear about girls cyber stalking. Going on FaceBook, Instagram, Snap Chat, Twitter, and every other social media app and reading everything he writes, looking at every picture he's posted, and any other insight into his life. I can honestly say that I was married long before any of this came about, but I have witnessed it from babysitters, parents, friends, and so many others. It's crazy how easy it has become.
All of this being said, when I read, I want to believe the crazy I'm reading. At the same time, I want to be shocked by the behavior. Once I am over the shock, I remind myself that it's a fictional character and we are all safe in the real world. I react the same with movies (think boiling bunnies). These characters stay with us forever, and that's what makes them the best.
But I have to ask myself, where do the authors get their ideas? Sure we know of the harmless crazy, but the boiling bunny crazy had to come from somewhere. I love being inspired by my surroundings, but to get that resonating craze, I always have to embellish. Until now. For the first time in my life, I am actually getting to watch as an innocent bystander a crazy adult stalking another adult. Without telling too much, just think of this...every time you think you're alone, she shows up; you're working out at the gym, she's there in the corner watching; you're hiding in your locked office, she uses her own key and lets herself in to see if you're there. This is the stuff that is motivating me to write a complete crazy story! I had NO IDEA this stuff ACTUALLY goes on. Well, now I know, and now I have new material.
I guess that's what writers have to do sometimes. We have to sit back, keep our eyes and ears open, and observe. The stories are literally writing themselves.