Yes! Another [Writer’s Stuff] post. You’ve been waiting. I know. If there is a topic you want me to cover, speak up. I have a lot of experience and knowledge when it comes to writing.
A plot bunny is a random idea for either the current WIP or another. It can be helpful. I keep a stash of plot bunnies in my notes section for future use.
The problem with plot bunnies is the fact it’s never just one idea. There are always ideas on ideas. Which is great if it connects to the current project. Sometimes, we hit gold when writing and everything just flows along as it should. The plot bunnies just guide the missing parts and pieces.
Normally plot bunnies are giving you ideas for another story or work. That’s when they become problematic.
Switching between projects isn’t a safe or easy task for a writer. So what are we to do?
Plot bunnies fall into two groups: ‘I’m your pet now; feed me’ and ‘just visiting’.
A just visiting plot bunny will pop into your head in one moment and will disappear if you ignore it. Just a quick idea that doesn’t go anywhere. Could you use the idea for a new WIP if you need one? Sure. Could you weave it into the WIP you are working on? Sure. But it’s not going to keep you up at night.
The first type of plot bunny- I’m your pet now; feed me- is another story all together. It requires your attention. Something about it needs you to work on it. This type can normally be sated, at least for a moment, if you spend the time quickly plotting down as little as possible and setting it aside. Plot as much as needed and set it aside. Try to work on the current project. If you cannot get the plot bunny out of your head, it means your mind is already switching over to it. It may require you to fully outline the work. It may require you to give in and write at least a little bit of it. Perhaps a short story that’s backstory or side story to the complete work will be enough. Or the opening.
Set a timer and let yourself be immersed in the new plot bunny if it isn’t going away. Let your creative juices flow with this new idea.
Hopefully, it can be satisfied quickly.
There have been times where a plot bunny is so insistent, that it becomes my new project. I had to fully complete the work before returning to the old WIP. It’s part of how I have so many started stories. As much as I try to limit what I work on when, plot bunnies will deny you that chance.
Plot bunnies are ideas. Ideas that can disrupt the flow of writing. Don’t lose to it if you don’t have to.
If you have need of plot bunnies or have some to offer, I’m here. I have a collection of “just plots” that came to me and forced me to write.