Rebooting Your Inspiration
Power of Words – photogragh by Antonio Litterio
This is a guest post by Writer’s Relief, an author’s submission service that has been serving the creative writing community since 1994. Besides helping authors submit their work to literary agents and journals, they blog regularly for The Huffington Post‘s Writer Wednesday column.
We know as well as you do that it’s not easy to be a writer. You can’t just sit down and write; you need to be inspired. And you can’t just turn inspiration on when you need it, like a faucet or a light switch.But there are particular things you can do to help jump-start your inspiration when you need it.
Stream Of Consciousness.
If you can’t seem to get yourself to write, just write anyway and see what comes up. Scribble down whatever’s on your mind, draw some pictures, rant about the service (or lack thereof) at your least favorite restaurant. You’ll wind up with some good material this way.
Get Out. Go for a drive, or a walk, or a bike ride. Change the scenery and, in doing so, you might change your perspective. Keep your eyes and ears open, eavesdrop on short conversations you hear and fill in the rest of them. Figure out for yourself how that broken compact disc ended up on the side of the road.
Go to the supermarket and pick up one of the more sensational tabloids. Pick out an article—perhaps the one about the mad scientist and his world-destroying laser, or the woman who had 18 children at once (three of which were wombats)—and write a story about that. Don’t be afraid to get a little weird.
Point Of View.
If people always wrote what they knew, the literary world would get boring pretty fast. Instead of writing about the holiday shopping rush from the view of a person frustrated with customer service, take that same scene and write it from the perspective of a homeless person or even a stray cat.
Mine Your Dreams.
When a dream about the end of the world shocks you awake, make sure you have a pen and notebook handy on your nightstand to write it down. Get down as many details as you can right away, because you probably won’t remember them in the morning. You may not get a whole novel out of it, but if you just get a scene or even a single character, that’s a start. Speaking of having a notebook handy…
Keep A Notebook With You.
At all times. You never know when a great idea, or even a sentence, could hit you in the face. You don’t want to struggle to remember it until you get back home to write it down.Humor Yourself. As writers, we all get that inner voice going at some time, the one that has the really weird ideas. And you say in response, “Pipe down, head-voice, that’s a dumb idea.” But instead of writing it off straight away, just give it a chance. Someone came up with the idea of “zombies in love,” and that made its way into movie theaters.
There are a ton of these on the Internet and in writers magazines. You may think that there are only so many ideas that can stem from one question, but the difference in everything that comes before and after is where your creativity can truly shine.
And that’s not all we’ve got. You can also check out our Motivation, Encouragement, And Inspiration Tool Kit!