I can remember when I was younger how I used to love to go fishing. Growing up so close to the Gulf coast, of course fresh fish and other seafood made its way to our table quite often. There were canals surrounding my hometown, full of everything from channel catfish to snapping turtles and almost every weekend during the summers would find me either fishing off the banks of a levee or pulling traps to uncover treasures from the deep.
It fascinated me how my parents would set the traps and troll for the extra food to feed a hungry family of six. They would start with what seemed like useless garbage and ended up with tasty treats to tempt the fussiest taste buds. Searching for treasures in the canals surrounding our house was a necessity and the fastest way to produce the best results.
Writing is a lot like trolling. Writers throw out the nets, hoping to gather juicy ideas and create a delicious dish for their readers to sink their teeth into. But writing, like fishing, requires tons of patience and the right tools to make the big catch. You can't reel in a marlin with a cane pole and you can't produce a quality story with just a wish and a prayer. You have to cast your net with just the right balance between character and plot. Sometimes your ideas are too small and you have to throw them back. Sometimes they just aren't tasty enough to entice an agent or editor to try your story.
But sometimes the bait and the line are just right and they are hooked...