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Hereford Eye
September 26th, 2002, 04:22 PM
Came across a great SF idea generator in the form of a book called The Body Electric, Electromagnetism and the Foundation of Life by Becker and Selden, Quill, William Morrow, 1985. Becker spent his life researching regeneration, e.g., salamanders, et al. This got him into electromagnetism and from there came this book. If cell regeneration doesn't hook you, try this sampler from a list given late in the book. Even if not 100% factual, the possibilities are still great.
(1) The earth's electromagnetic field is largely a result of interaction between the magnetic field per se, emanating from the planet's molten iron-nickel core, and the cahrged gas of ionosphere. It varies with the lunar day and month and there's also a yearly change as we revolve arounf the sun.
(2) A cycle of several centuries is driven from somewhere in the galactic center.
If these ideas strike you as they did me, find a copy of the book. Besides being eminently readable, every chapter is a hotbed of "what if"s waiting to be discovered.

choppy
September 27th, 2002, 04:39 PM
I find that often my best ideas come from simple research. General science periodicals such as "Scientific American", "Popular Science" or "Discover" are excellent sources for story ideas.

I have found that often I get my best ideas while I'm studying for final exams - which is great as far as ideas go, but sucks for maintaining the motivation to keep my nose between the books.

Thanks for the suggestion.