So, I know I just posted last night, but I’m too excited about my next short story to not write about it rightthisveryminute.
Seriously. Just an hour ago, I had zero clue where I was going with my ladybug story. In case you’re not familiar with the “Ladybug, Ladybug” rhyme at the foundation of my story for this week’s Creativity Workshop project, it goes like this:
Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home
Your house is on fire, and your children shall burn.
There are several different versions of this rhyme, all of them depressing, but this is the one I remember from childhood.¹
Anyway. The creative juices weren’t quite flowing when I first sat down to think this morning, and I was worried this idea would end up looking way-too-similar to the nursery rhyme itself.² Lo and behold, after a little time spent scribbling in my awesome lime green graph-lined notebook, some actual (non-ladybug) characters popped their heads out of the (soon-to-be-burning) woodwork. Damaged, hurting characters who crave love but aren’t quite sure how to get it. Characters with multi-faceted motives and cavernous hearts I totally want to explore.
Now, I have on my hands something that has potential to be exciting, adventurous, and action-packed yet full of depth. Also, the ideas came loaded with a structure I’ve never experimented with, so I’m looking forward to that. Oh, ladybugs, you’re going to be quite the challenge, yet if you work out in my favor? Quite the satisfying accomplishment, too.
Alright. Random excited outburst over.
¹For many, many years, I wondered, “Was that seriously a real song, or did I just imagine it? Seriously? And why did I like it so much? Who was the weirdo who thought those lyrics were appropriate for a tape of children’s music?” Lo and behold, yes. It is a real song, from a real nursery rhyme, and my little toddler memory preserved every strange word of it.
²I’m talking literal ladybugs here, people, and I was just not convinced I should go that direction. I couldn’t erase cartoonish images of Strawberry Shortcake and the Peculiar Purple Pieman of Porcupine Peak (with a ladybug and a fire tossed in here or there), and…well…that felt a little too on-the-nose. Not to mention cartoonish, when I think the rhyme needs more depth to do it justice.