Guest Post: Writing Inspiration with Jaleta Clegg

13 Aug

Today my guest is fantasy author Jaleta Clegg who address that age old question: “Where do you get your ideas?”

How many authors dread that question? *raises hand* Terry Pratchett explained in one of his Discworld novels that particles of inspiration sleet through the universe all the time. When one of them intersects a brain, the light bulb goes on and an idea is born. I like that explanation.


The truth is my story ideas come from mundane sources. Nature documentaries are a favorite for sparking ideas. I’ve got a horror story idea I’m still toying with about pots for containing demon spirits that was triggered by a tiny little article in National Geographic. My favorite question is, “What if?”


The plot for Nexus Point is based on the question, “What would a high-tech person do if they were dumped into !
a politically hot situation on a medieval tech world?” Of course, much of that story grew from the character’s personality.


Book 2, Priestess of the Eggstone, came from “How can I get her in even more trouble?” She’s being chased by the crime syndicate who runs the company she’s flying courier for. They want the illegal cargo she just stole. The Patrol is after her. She thinks they’re trying to arrest her. But her copilot has an entire species chasing him. He stole their god, the Eggstone. That’s the setup for the book. The story and all its complications grew out of that simple description.


Writing is an organic process. An idea is sparked, a story started. As I write, I get flooded with new ideas, new option, new twists and turns. Sometimes, I can see a scene in my mind. I write like a demon to get to that scene so I can figure out how it fits into the overall story.


Stories start from a character or a question or sometimes just a setting. The real work of writing is making that character do something interesting, or answering the question in an unexpected way, or figuring out what happened in that setting that makes it worth reading about. Story seeds are in everything around us. Look at the world sideways and see how different it looks. Then write your vision.


My last word of advice—Trust your subconscious. When I let mine loose on my stories and let the words flow, the stories amaze me with the twists and turns. The characters come to life. Yes, it’s messy and it drives me insane trying to keep track of everything, but that’s why editing was invented.


Where do you find inspiration for your stories?




Jaleta Clegg loves to play with words. Sometimes they gel into stories ranging from space opera epics to silly horror to everything in between. Find more at




Priestess of the Eggstone: Pursued by the Targon Crime Syndicate bent on revenge, the Patrol intent on recruitment, and the Sessimoniss who want their god back, the last thing Captain Dace needs is a handsome copilot with romance on his mind.


One Response to “Guest Post: Writing Inspiration with Jaleta Clegg”

  1. Terri Bruce November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am #

    I totally think Terry Pratchett has it right πŸ™‚ But Jaleta Clegg is a close second πŸ™‚ I’m pretty much the same as you – what ifs, random subconcious thoughts (that perculate to the surface when I’m just falling asleep), and taking a character or plot idea and tweaking it until you get something new and exciting. πŸ™‚

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: