"Creativity requires input...You're gathering material with which to build."
—Gene Luen Yan
I was sorry when I turned the trail's corner and disturbed this family of ducks. They were scattered throughout the reeds on a steep bank along my favorite lake. Startled, the mom duck had a harassed look as she tried to gather up all the ducklings. She searched through the reeds until all of them were accounted for and heading out into the water.
I'm reminded of this when I get busy and fail to gather up my writing ideas when I first think of them. I'm going "retro" now. I keep a real notebook and a pencil on my bedside table and in my purse for ideas.
Vintage books about writing—those published before smartphones—always advised keeping paper and pen handy. Too many times, I've forgotten ideas by not recording them. They might not always turn out to be brilliant, but if I write them down, I can judge if they're any good later. And, there's something about writing ideas down by hand that makes them take on more life in my mind. So, I'll learn a lesson from this mom. I'll gather up my ideas and keep them safe.