The Idea Mill # 8

I’ve gathered up a few more cool articles to help spark your imaginations. These are interesting for anyone who wants to take a look. I always look at them from a writer’s perspective.

The first one is one of those top ten lists. Thankfully, it isn’t the type where you have to click on page one through ten to read it. (I hate that) This one is called 10 of the Stranges Jobs in the Victorian Era.Β All of them would add a bit of style to a novel set in this era.

I was drawn to the lamplighters and how they sold interesting bugs to collectors. They would have observed a great many things during a shift, and would make great informants. Maybe you want to write a story about a mad scientist, and the first evidence is some strange bug.

I also liked the leech collectors. They would be the perfect ones to find the floating body somewhere. I’ve seen too many grave robbers and female hysteria doctors, but they probably have some mileage left in them.

This one is called 10 Unsolved Mysteries from the Wild West. There are several lost mines mentioned. Those who like adventure stories ought to find something interesting about those. You wouldn’t have to set the story in the Wild West either. It could be a Martian colony pretty easily.

I’m drawn to the guy who was marooned on Antelope Island. I think this could be made into a ghost story pretty easily. So could Pancho Villa’s body parts.

The last one I’ll just call 6 Ancient Objects. These are things from the ancient world that we still can’t explain today. Any one of them would make a great “we are not alone” kind of story. I also like the Baigong Pipes as part of a fantasy story. They could be all kinds of things, from a weapon to a cemetary in a fantasy setting. Those stone spheres would make great monster eggs too.

I’ll keep collecting articles and posting these, they are pretty popular posts. Share what you can come up with in the comments. I’d like to hear it, and I’ll bet other readers would too. Maybe your leech catcher saves enough cash to go hunting for a lost gold mine in Costa Rica, and comes across some huge stone spheres that are more than they seem.

Happy reading and have fun with them.


Filed under The Idea Mill, Writing

24 responses to “The Idea Mill # 8

  1. Loved all of these! Thanks for sharing them.


  2. “Strange jobs”: a phrase that always captures my attention!


  3. The Baghdad batteries fascinate me most because they were a power source which could explain a lot of other unknowns. Can you imagine how many other jobs are going to become obsolete in the future because of our gains in technology and knowledge. My hopes of being a shoe shine girl were dashed pretty early.


  4. Hi Craig

    Lifemunk here (owner of the ‘6 ancient objects’ website). Thanks for mentioning our post about the ancient objects to your readers. They really are fascinating objects.

    I think besides the Baigong pipes that people have already mentioned above that would be a good topic to write about, the ‘Antikythera Mechanism’ facinates me the most and would possibly also be a great topic. It’s an artefact that seemed very out of place for the time it was built, before people seemed to have knowledge of such things around engeneering, mathemeatics and mechanics – atleast 1000 years sooner than what might have been expected.

    So that could be a great seed for a story about alien visitors, or some sort time travel story or similar. Anyways glad you found the article useful… πŸ™‚


    • That was a great article. I picked it up on Zite Magazine, so you must have some good internet juju going for you. It’s my understanding scientists are revisiting the Antikythera shipwreck. They hope to find more of the original object or something more. Sounds like it will take a couple of years to complete the dive. Honored to have you stop by.


  5. What a goldmine of ideas! Thanks for sharing these. I especially loved the Victorian jobs and was shocked to learn there really were sin-eaters. I thought that was a bit of dusty folklore *shudder* Great stuff! Also loved the stone spheres among the ancient objects. I’ve read about them before and have always been intrigued by the mystery!


  6. That jobs list — what a hoot!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Those “mysterious” objects are truly fascinating. I’d only heard of a few before, so thank you for sharing πŸ™‚


  8. Thank you, I’m saving this in an idea folder for a new ghost story I’m planning.


  9. Those are cool! Do you always seek out these articles, or do they jump out at you, seeking to be found? I love the way your mind works with these things.


    • I have certain categories I follow in my RSS reader. I also have the same setup in Zite magazine. I wind up browsing, just like paper magazines. When something looks like it might spark ideas with the writing community, I bookmark it. As soon as I have three links, I make another post.

      I always try to offer some commentary, because I don’t like those blog posts I have to open, only to find a link. It also helps readers decide which links to open and which to skip over. For example, two links got many clicks, the Wild West fizzled.

      Liked by 1 person

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