Friday, December 5, 2014

Looking For Inspiration To Write?

A Jack London website mentions that he wrote fifty books in a sixteen year period. Many of his books were based on his own experiences on the sea and in the wilderness. His quote impressed me. He didn't sit inside a warm, toasty house waiting for inspiration to strike. He created his own inspiration, or so it seems.

Perhaps too many writers sit in front of the computer each morning and wait for inspriation to come floating by, then drop down into their lap. Oh, if only it could be that easy. Where do we find inspiration for our stories, poems, essays and other writing? It is rarely found in your desk chair in front of your laptop.

I once had a friend comment that she couldn't understand how I could be a writer. You're such a social person and writers are introverts and often recluses. That was her personal interpretation of a writer. She went on to say she thought I'd be lonely spending so much time alone writing. I never consider writing time as being lonely. After all, I'm with the people I'm writing about and thinking about the ones I'm writing for. I can't say I've ever felt lonesome while writing.

Yes, I truly am a social person. I like being where the action is--with my friends, at meetings or conferences, with family, at sporting events. Besides the joy of being with others, that is often when I find inspiration to write. Something I see or hear will trigger an idea. There have been times when I've grabbed a piece of paper and jotted down a few words to jog my memory later on.

I imagine Jack London spent time with others who, like him, led an adventurous life. They must certainly have been an inspiration to him and I'm guessing thata many of his characters were based on people he'd actually met or observed somewhere.

People watching in a coffeehouse, at a sporting event or in an airport can inspire a writer over and over. Think of all the people you see in situations like that all the little slices of life you witness. Sitting in a pub listening to the tales others at the table are telling can be inspiring to a writer, too. We often rely on our own memories to help get us in the writing mode but the memories of others can also be an isnpiration.

If you want to write a baseball story, where is the best place to get some inspiration and background? Needless to say, it's a ball park. Looking to write a story about the life of a monk? Visit an abbey. Where are you going to find inspiration for an article on learning to be a chef? Maybe at a culinary school.

In other words, don't sit at home and research the topic on google. Get out there and find your inspiration. Nobody is going to come along and drop it into your lap. It's up to you.

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