Curtis A. Deeter’s “April Challenge”

Good afternoon, humans and huwomans!

A quick announcement … this April, starting in two days, I will be sharing a flash fiction, a short story, or a poem with you every single day. You heard me correctly. Every. Single. Day. Each one finds its roots in those parts of life I keep coming back to, those weird things that inspire me over and over again.

There are a lot of thoughts on inspiration, but many authors will give you some iteration of the same response: We simply don’t know where we get our ideas.

Amy Tan said, “Who knows where inspiration comes from. Perhaps it arises from desperation. Perhaps it comes from the flukes of the universe, the kindness of the muses.”

Now, I’ve never believed in the muses, although a tiny spirit talking in someone’s ear and snagging art out of thin air is a fabulous idea for a story. Maybe another perspective might help.

Neil Gaiman said, “People seem to think that they can’t come up with ideas, and they’re wrong. They can and they do, but they just think of it as daydreaming, or wasting time. Kids get told not to make things up, and in my case, nobody told me long enough, or it just didn’t stick.”

I tend to agree more with Neil. I know where my inspiration and story ideas come from. They come from my head, my imagination. They come from a few sentences I read online, from a headline of a newspaper, from a tale older than time itself that I couldn’t help but bring fresh life.

Most of my “April Challenge” stories derive from urban legend, folklore, fairy tale, and mythology. Some of them come from things that have happened in my own life. And the others were lightning flashes in my mind that I gave just enough attention to capture on paper.

I hope you enjoy them. And please, if you have a story you can’t help but bring to life, I’d love to hear it.