It Was Brilliant in My Mind · 16 May 2020

If you have ever had aspirations to be a writer, or if you are a writer, or even if you have never thought about being a writer, you have still probably had the thought that whatever idea it was that just escaped you was brilliant. At least in your own mind.

I have been writing for a long time. I daresay even as long as I can remember. Not always every day, but I have always written at least from time to time. And even before I was writing, I have had plenty of great ideas.

Okay. Everybody says they have great ideas. And some of them even do. But that is not the point. The point is that sometimes those ideas escape you. They leave and never come back. Unless of course, you write everything down. Which is impossible. Which means that at least some ideas have escaped. Period. Even some of the greatest ideas. Probably all of your and my greatest ideas have escaped us. Which is a bummer to think about. (Makes you want to get a notebook and keep it with you all the time.) Still, it is also a bit like fishing. You always want to talk about the one that got away.

When you talk about fishing, you tend to think of the ones that got away. At least I do. After all, those fish that you reeled in most of the way always seemed to jump in front of your face, do a backflip, arch their backs, and spit the hook right at you. And they were always so huge. Oh so huge. But alas. They got away, so you have no real idea just how big they really were. And of course, the fish get bigger and bigger and bigger the more the stories get told. But who knows just how big those fish that got away really were?

The same thing is true of ideas. When you have this great idea (whether it is for the greatest thing since sliced bread or your next blog post), you tend to think in terms of best ever. At least I do. Well, maybe not always. After all, I am still trying to get to the bar of mediocre. Still, I do think that I have worthy story ideas. And there are some worthier than others. So there must also be some worthiest of all ideas. (Technically, I suppose there can only be one worthiest. At least at a time.) At any rate, I tend to think of those ideas that got away as the best ideas I have ever had. The ones that really would have been the greatest things since sliced bread. The ones that really would have been the ideas behind the greatest stories ever told. (By the way, The Greatest Story Ever Told is actually a real book. Check it out.) They really were that big. Really.

Just like the fish.

Just like the fish stories, those ideas that got away tend to get larger with the telling. Only the telling is not to other people. It is just in my own mind. I tend to think that those great story ideas were so mindboggling. They just got away somehow. (Probably because I did not write them down.) Still. They seemed so wonderful. The greatest ever.

Well, just like this story, those ideas that got away only seem like the greatest ideas ever. In reality, they were probably just ordinary. Or less. Still, they seemed great at the moment. They seemed brilliant in my own mind. At least until they became just one of the ones that got away.

© 2020 Michael T. Miyoshi

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