Have you ever wondered where couches come from? According to my 3 year-old niece, they come from cows. The beginning of the word couch sounds like cow (at least in English,) so, to her, it is logical. Her logic, however, does not stop there. If couches come from cows, then a couch is made by stuffing two cows, sewing them together, and using food coloring to change the colors.
I just love my nieces and nephews and my grandchild; the things their young minds come up with are amazing. The explanations they give for how the world around them works are unique if nothing else, and their problem-solving skills border on genius. If you take the time to observe the children in your life, you will soon realize this to be true.
Several years ago, while taking a writing course, I had an assignment that left me drawing a blank. It was a simple lesson—write a story for children. No matter how hard I tried, though, I could not think of a subject. On a whim, I decided to ask my nephew what kind of story he would like to hear. (Never let anyone tell you that a 4 year-old doesn’t have a definite idea of what they like.) Not only did he give me the idea for the story, but he also named the two main characters.
Inspiration can strike you at anytime, but when it doesn’t, you might have to look for it. One of the best sources of inspiration is your audience, especially if you are writing for children. I have learned to never underestimate the imagination of a child. Even if they cannot articulate what they like, or want, their tastes and expectations are fully formed in their minds. Do not disappoint them.
Just thought I would jot this down.