One of the most frequently asked questions that authors, poets, and all walks of creative people receive is: Where do you get your inspirations or ideas from?
It’s such a marvelous question. Yet, the answers vary from person to person because inspiration is a deeply personal experience.
For me, I’ve found that inspirations don’t arrive on command. They occur when I’m not actively pursuing them. For example, a number of inspirations and character or story developments occur when I’m participating in mundane activities such as driving, grocery shopping, doing laundry or ironing (yes, I iron my own dress shirts!), sweeping the garage, washing dishes (yes, I hand-wash my dishes!), or cleaning house. I should note that I frequently receive inspirations and ideas when listening to music, often accompanying those afore-mentioned mundane activities. Music has always been a key part of my creative process, particularly when I’m actively typing at the keyboard in “writing mode.”
Inspiration aside, my problem is less about creative ideas and more about my lack of quality writing time available.
My “day job” is particularly stressful, hectic-paced, and rife with ever-evolving circumstances throughout my workday, in which case very little time or energy is actually available for creative thought processing. However, I won’t deny that an occasional base level inspiration or two was born from an experience at work. For the most part, my brain is in an attentive “high gear” mode during my day job. That’s one reason why, after work, I typically am only interested in an evening meal, time with my kitties, and perhaps a movie or binge-watching streaming content (Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime are three of my best friends!). Very little of my writing occurs until weekends, holidays, or occasional vacation days. (Yet another reason why my works are published on a less than regimented frequency, unlike many of my more successful author peers. Much as with university-level academia, the battle cry of “publish or perish” is ever more important these days in the fiction publishing industry, I’m afraid.)
Many successful authors have faced these challenges, though each insists to aspiring writers that you should write at any available moment, whether you have only minutes or even hours available to you. That’s excellent advice. Many stray ideas can be preserved for future inclusion into your material by grabbing those fleeting moments to type (or make notes) as inspirations strike. Also, if someone is truly serious about their craft, they’ll make time for it where they can. I likewise practice this oft-touted writer’s wisdom. Again, most successful authors promote these practices, so it’s hard to argue with success, right?
The same might be said of regimented blogging (*pointing my own finger back at me*), but that’s a topic for another day.
How is inspiration revealed to you? Drop me a response and let me know.
Until later, enjoy life; be kind to those around you, and Happy Reading! Peace.