The magical story-idea generator

Story ideas are the currency of the journalism industry. Generating good ones assures a steady stream of work. Story ideas exist in deceptive forms, though. They abound in every moment of the day, but they can also be tough to recognize.

Science suggests I should try to develop ideas late at night or early in the morning, times when I traditionally don’t operate well. Beer could help, too.

Some studies concluded that people do better at associative thinking — non-analytical problems that require creative insights — while groggy or inebriated.

Other research shows that people identify their best work after time has elapsed. In other words, innovation follows a period of rest or distraction.

Creativity involves both inclusive thinking, the daydreaming sort, and outright rejection of bad first attempts to develop wide associations and cultivate new ideas.

I read extensively and consider myself able to draw connections. Often, these don’t quite develop into fully realized story ideas. Facebook exposes flaws in the economy. Robot theory influences politics. These are articles I’m capable of writing.

I just need less sleep, more hops and time to lie in the shadows of the columns here on campus.

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