But today, in a spark of hope for my creativity not being dead.
Today, I came up with a story idea, and I love it--it feels like it would be easy enough to write, too. A book revolving around one critical split in time for an individual making one different choice in their life. Upon them gaining superpowers, whether they use those powers to become a supervillain or a superhero, with a dual story tracking both universes and showing the same person, just as different on the spectrum of hero/villain, and how they progress from having been identical individuals to, via their differing experiences, be different people...with a twist.
Every night, they dream of the day of their counterpart. The supervillain gets to, via their dreams, see the life of the superhero that day, and vice-versa. Eventually, near the end of the dreams, both can emerge to converse with each other, realizing that their dreams are of a very very real alternate self, and in their conversations with each other, manifest as various banter about their different decisions.
And how, while they both took different choices and have changed to be different people, they still have many core similarities. Different, but the same. They both find great fulfillment in their lives--on a fundamental level, Good Feels Good applies to the superhero, whose positive effects on society bring them genuine happiness as they see the positive efforts their contributions have made towards the world, the betterment of others, the altruism having given what amounts to a constant high of endorphins where doing good just makes them feel happy.
In contrast, the supervillain isn't pure evil, but lives a life where they consider themselves above good and evil, doing what they truly feel like, unimpeded, acting on ambition, to screw the rules of the world, the laws, to take whatever they deem to be to their liking, and to great success, living in luxury, having the thrill of the hunt, the chase, relishing in knowing that the public see them as a villain and taking pleasure in them not being able to put a stop to them. Taking everything they want, living the life they choose.
And yet, both know that the life they know, aside from being costumed so having a mask about them, is still a mask, hiding their truer personality where there are aspects of their life they don't live while masked--both of them feel 'trapped' by their role, both feel obligated to play the part they are seen as, living in partial regret of not having chosen the other option.
Once condemned as a villain, committing great atrocities, there was no going back, no ability to do good, no ability to feel good upon doing good because there was no good to be done, no opportunity, no option, no ability to see the looks of others and have their happiness bring them happiness. They had to seize happiness for themselves, they had to take pleasure into their own hands, with no choice, no option, to let it come naturally to them. A prison of being entirely self-reliant with no ability to have a life with others.
Once committed to being a hero, there was a sense of obligation, of duty, to continue doing good. The doorway into the other world was sealed off, and the continued desire to do good serves as a prison, where while happiness from their deeds would come naturally from seeing it, they feel trapped by it knowing that they can't gain happiness on their own, that they need to rely on others to obtain it. A life as a slave to others, with no ability to live on their own and get it from their own actions, entirely dependent on others to give it to them.
And beyond that--both live in isolation, feeling deeply lonely. Neither of them have true companionship, so there's a deep-seated feeling of being incredibly alone, no matter who surrounds them, no matter their circumstances, no matter who is with them, no matter the lives they have lived.
But, on seeing the life of the other, both feel like they made the right choice, in noting the flaws of the other and having seen the alternative, feeling that they have advantages to them. In particular, the supervillain self notes that while both of them have a fear of their deepest inner evils, the supervillain self notes the difference between them. The superhero self constantly lives in fear of it to this day; the supervillain self has conquered those fears, by feeling that their life is superior to that of what the inner evil could achieve. The inner evil could be so much more destructive, but would live a far more inferior, briefer, bloodier life that'd quickly be annihilated, so while the superhero feels afraid of the inner evil, the supervillain with their "above good and evil" mentality, literally feels above the inner evil, feeling like they have the superior life.
That being said, the superhero also feels some liberation in knowing they have the luxury of more options, more choices, existing. The prison is mostly of their own making, rather than the making of society. There's an active choice involved in choosing to continue to be good, instead of no choice involved in being forced to commit to a lifestyle.
And the entire book would explore the differences between these two mentalities.
That having been said.
I don't actually know how to turn it into a book.
I don't know how the story ends.
I don't know the nature of the super's powers (which would be the same in both).
I don't know the nature of the challenges they'd face, the nature of the world they live in.
I don't know the backstory, the worldbuilding, behind the book, nor a truly coherent plot. I have vague ideas of some things happening to the supervillain, but no truly coherent start to finish plot.
So in spite of how much I love the book, I doubt I can make it.