Ripped From The Headlines

Don’t you love that title? I do. One of the crime show dramas uses it as a tagline, and I think it’s great (though I don’t watch those shows so I have no idea which one actually uses it).

I’m not big on watching TV, but I do love to watch the news. Especially when I’m at the gym on the treadmill, beating feet and listening to my ipod. Best way to watch the news actually – no sound, great music, and you get to read the story via closed captioning.

Today as I was sweating and watching, I couldn’t help but think how many fabulous plot ideas are right in front of our eyes.

Take for instance the Massachusetts man who’s suing Continental Airlines because his ex-wife took their 3 yr old daughter into Mexico without a notarized letter from him stating it was okay. (BTW, I did that, took my 1 yr old to Canada with me a few years ago and didn’t realize I needed a letter from her dad stating it was okay for her to leave the country. Canadian officials raised an eyebrow, but they let us through without much of a hassle).

How about the Sheriff in Florida who lost his father to a serial killer years ago and Tuesday night lost his wife to a home invader?

Or the mother in NY who accidentally smothered her baby while trying to fend off rats.

Or the mummified man found dead after six years

Not interested in headlines? Try Hollywood. What about the Tara Conner controversy or anything dealing with Brittany Spears or Madonna’s adoption fiasco or….the list goes on and on.

Looking for plot ideas? Try watching the news.

Have any news stories stood out in your mind as great plot ideas? And have you ever written a story that developed from something you saw on the news?