"Hey, I've got this idea for a book. Maybe you could write it for me..."



This is why I'm politely noncommittal when people tell me their ideas.

20 comments:

Matthew MacNish said...

Hah! Interesting. I've never had anyone tell me their idea. Do people actually give you ideas, like they think they have one that's so awesome, you're immediately going to ask them if you can use it?

Adam Heine said...

I've had people:

* Offer to let me use their idea.

* Ask if I could help them write a book based on their idea.

* Suggest they be the idea person while I be "the writer."

It's a weird job we have.

Sarah said...

Whew! No one's ever said this to me, thank goodness. I'm impressed with "politely noncommittal." I'm afraid I'd skip straight to "staggering away while laughing like a hyena."

S.P. Bowers said...

I usually say something along the lines of "Even starting with the same idea different people would write different stories. It sounds like you're passionate about that idea, why don't you write it so it turns out the way you envision".

vic caswell (aspiring-x) said...

ack! YES!
my hubby does this to me ALL THE TIME!

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

LOL! Vic - so does mine! I'm like, "YOU should write that book!" He says, "Write a book? I don't even read them." It's a good thing I love the man.

A friend-of-a-friend actually did something like this. Nothing good came of it - the book died, and the friendship too. #sosad

vic caswell (aspiring-x) said...

@sue- YES! i tell my hubs to write his down too! he IS a reader, and he tells stories very well verbally, but... he's just scared, i think.

Juliana Haygert said...

So true!

Also, the time spent developing the idea, because, seriously one simple idea doesn't make an entire book. You gotta expand it and create more around it ... MORE TIME! lol

Rena said...

When I first saw your chart, I thought I had a line of dead pixels (The horror!), but then I moved the browser. *Then* I started laughing. I haven't stopped.

Aaron Blue said...

Hey, the only reason I have mentioned ideas to you is because I thought they might be useful to you for co-opting to your purpose...maybe I should stop.

Cap'n Heine said...

Adam, the same thing happens in game design as well. :)

Adam Heine said...

Not you, Aaron. You gave me a simile idea, not a book :-)

Rachel said...

I've had someone tell me their "amazing" idea for a book. I told him it couldn't hurt to try writing it. He gave me a "duh" look and said, "No, I can't write well. I'll let you write it for me." Of course he wanted the money from the book sales, and his name on the cover because after all, the idea is the hardest part. ;) I told him I had enough ideas of my own, thank you.

Angela Brown said...

Yeah, I have a couple of folks that have done that. It's...interesting. I smile and try to change the subject lol!!

Laura Hughes, MittensMorgul said...

This is fantastic! I have had people tell me they had an idea for a book, but then wouldn't tell me their idea, as if I planned to steal it. Really? Like I don't have enough of my own ideas that I want to write first.

According to Word, I have spent more than 2200 hours writing and editing the MS I'm querying now. I couldn't imagine investing that much time in another person's idea! Crazy!

Faith E. Hough said...

Oh, yes. I hate that. "I have an idea. ALL you have to do is write it!" As if I'm not kept awake at night by the mounds of ideas in my head begging to be written.
This really made me smile. :)

maine character said...

Lawrence Block has said this is one reason he tries not to tell people he's a writer. Invariably they tell him they got a great idea, and some will even generously offer to split the money fifty-fifty.

Emmet said...

Sooooooo does that mean you just want to buy the idea from me in order to keep it simple?

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Hah! That's exactly it.

Miss Jack Lewis Baillot said...

HAHAHA! YES! I've had people do that! "I've a cool book idea! Will you write it for me?!" Like, they think I can just write it all down in a day or something. It's a bit harder then that.