Where do ideas come from?

People have been asking me this question a lot since the publication of my book.  Others have asked about specific characters and their connection to “real” people – the characters are mostly more an amalgam of real people then they realise – for better and for worse, depending on the character.   One of my “villains”, Andy Matthews (who features in The Tipping Competition and A Day at the Top), has been the subject of some considerable conjecture – but is really built on someone I knew fifteen years ago, plus some insights from the various people I spoke to about their own “boss” stories.

Other times, something fun gets said spontaneously and I have to write it down.  This happened yesterday while I was watching my oldest son play cricket.  The team were sitting around talking about the Rugby World Cup final, played last night.  I was not so keen on 13 year olds discussing the odds on offer, but this exchange made my day

Boy 1: France are 4 to 1
Boy 2: No, France are 8 to 1
Boy 3: France don’t even have one!

It was a superb piece of improv that got the laughs it deserved.  And strangely prophectic, given that France lost by 1.

Like all the little slices of life that I see now that I’m looking, it was quickly tapped into the Evernote app on my phone for future reference.  Not that I’d have forgotten this gem!