This American Life’s Starlee Kine (@starlee) related her ideas to the little orphan Annie, just leaning on a windowsill waiting to be picked up and taken care of.
During a TAL segment, Starlee interviewed Phil Collins and talked about the inspiration for some of Gensis’ best work, which came after a divorce that was finalized on his birthday. The moral of the story was not to let go of bad things that happen, but actually turn them into something creative - get those orphans out of your head.
Illustrator/Animator/Writer Arthur Jones showed his story-telling illustrations that depicted peoples fears and problems.
An idea can rot. If you don’t do something with it soon enough it just won’t work any more.