Inspiration, Writing

FAIRY WASH: Thoughts on Capturing Ideas

IMG_2224My daughter, age eight, is convinced there are fairies living in our neighbor’s yard. For one thing, the dense flower beds and towering trees are perfect spots for fairy houses. We’ve even had a couple of unconfirmed sightings of dainty creatures with wings flying near the daisies. They may have been dragonflies, but you never know. The clincher, though, is that early the other morning, while walking the dog, I spotted fairy wash out to dry on our neighbor’s lawn.  I’m talking sheets and towels, blankets and pilllow cases. How do I know it was fairy wash? Well, I recognized it immediately from my own childhood, when my grandmother showed me fairy wash on her front lawn.  Fairy wash is distinctive because  it sparkles.

Skeptics think fairy linens are simply dew-dazzled spider webs, but my daughter and I know better. That’s why  when I returned from my walk, I grabbed my daughter (and camera) and hurried back so we could prove conclusively that fairies do indeed live in our neighborhood.

We were too late.  The fairy wash was no where insight.  It had evaporated, or rather, already been taken in by those elusive fairies. The next morning, intent on succeeding my daughter joined me on my early morning walk. Lo and behold, the fairies had again been busy with their wash and we now offer you our proof that they do indeed exist (see picture above).

As writers, there is a lesson to be learned here.  Ideas, after all, are kind of like fairy wash. If we don’t capture them right away, they might evaporate. That’s why I try to always carry not only my camera (so I can snap shots of those elusive fairies) but also my trusty tiny notebook.  It’s so small, there’s no excuse not to have it along at all times.  How about you?  Have you got that notebook ready so you can capture your next dazzling idea before it evaporates?

Happy writing, all!

13 thoughts on “FAIRY WASH: Thoughts on Capturing Ideas”

  1. Charming post, Laura! My niece and I once photo captured a fairy dancing on the top of her head! Swear.

    I try to carry my phone in my pocket, and have Dragon dictation as the first button, so I can hit it even without my glasses, and I keep scrap slips of paper everywhere in the house. :0)

  2. Ooo – lucky to see and photograph fairy wash!

    For years my daughter and I were on the hunt for the red capped mushrooms with white polka dots, the kind you see in fairy tales. Well, turns out “Amanita muscaria” are not on the “safe” mushroom list, so it is probably good that there were none around us. Not that we would have eaten them, but….

  3. Wonderful post, Laura! I love that your daughter believes in fairies! I agree that ideas have to be recorded before we forget them. My mg w.i.p. was inspired by a dream–I had to get up and write it down on a scrap of paper (using eyeliner!) because I couldn’t find the notebook that is usually on my bedside table! Never again… = )

  4. Love your post, Laura! You just gave me a great idea for my fairy series 🙂 Now if only I knew where to store it 🙂 I have to admit, I’m haphazard with my ideas and looking for a better system. I’ve got several folder on my computer as well as two small notebooks and an actual file folder. But, they’re not organized at all how I’d like them to be. But, maybe that’s a good thing–I’m slowly, er rapidly, losing my Type A need to control and organize in exchange for a more free form type of organization that might be better for creativity. At least that’s what I’ll tell myself.

  5. Such a great mom you are, to go fairy hunting with your daughter. I wish I had those years back for my daughters! At 12, they don’t believe in fairies anymore.

    Thanks for the needed reminder to keep that notebook with me. I’m not very good about that. Maybe that’s why so many of my ideas evaporate!

  6. Precious.
    I was reminded of another “wash.” DS, then still a toddler, commenting when we walked in the fog of yet another such a summer day here. “I forgot to wash my eyes…”

  7. How fun! Maybe this fairy wash will also spark a story idea for you! I’ve gotten at least 1 story idea from my trip and captured it on camera.

  8. Thanks, all, for stopping by. With our nights dipping into the 50s, I think the conditions are going to be PERFECT for spotting fairy wash. Now, if only we could spot an actual fairy. They are so elusive.

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