As we have learned, we can’t just sit around and wait for inspiration to decide to knock on our doors. Most of the time, we need to take it upon ourselves to pursue inspiration. That’t the name of the game today. So, how does one pursue inspiration? If you have been stuck sitting at a computer for hours on end like I’ve been, you will know that inspiration can be effortlessly elusive. How does one catch up to it? Simple. You find inspiration by not looking for it.
Now hear me out. Have you ever approached a deer and as soon as you came closer it sprinted away? The same concept applies to inspiration. You can’t go after inspiration with guns blazing. You’ll scare it off. Pursuing inspiration takes tact, it takes planning and above all else, it take silence.
So, you have a deadline and you have no idea what else you can write. You’re frustrated and you’re questioning your skills as a writer. Here’s what you do:
1. Calm down. The more frustrated you are, the harder it will be for the ideas to flow. Take a breather if you need to. Go for a walk and most importantly, don’t panic.
2. Be quiet. I’m sure by this point you may think your work is trash, but that doesn’t mean you have to say it aloud. You’ll psych yourself out the more you hear yourself saying how awful you are. Just breath. You are not awful! Also, I’m not sure if anyone is like me, but the more silent a room, the more my brain starts racing. When you’re looking for something to write about, those thoughts are your best friend, but the only way you can expect to hear them is if you’re quiet. Trust me.
3. Stop caring so much. Now, I’m sure you’ll think I’m crazy with this one, but think about it, how many times have you been so worried about the word count or the deadline or the subject matter that you completely blocked yourself and now you have little to no words to show for it. Believe me, I can be as anxious as the next person when it comes to my writing because I want it to be perfect. The thing is, perfection is a fool’s pursuit. I can only write the best that is within me and I have done my best work when I stopped caring and just started writing. All I would do is just type and let my fingers connect to the idea center in my brain and just get out of my own way. It works, I promise and I’m a better writer because of it.
4. Respect the Art form. I do believe we need to stop caring when it comes to the trivial things revolving writing, but I also believe that a level of respect and reverence is necessary in the pursuit of that amazing idea. As you approach inspiration, do so respectfully. Don’t think that just because you’ve won so many awards that you’re suddenly the best writer on the planet. There are times when we think we’re so awesome that we take our minds and inspiration for granted.When we find ourselves on top of the world, it appears that nothing and no one will be able to bring us down, but that isn’t true. There’s always going to be a way down. Without respect for words and writing, inspiration will not be kind and the critics will be much worse.
5. Open your mind. Even if something doesn’t look like much, it could be the key to your next novel if you think hard enough. You can’t be inspired with a closed mind, that just isn’t how this works. Sometimes, you need to pause and take a look around. Maybe your inspiration was hiding right in front of your face. Nearly anything can be inspiration, if you open your mind and your eyes to the possibilities.
With these ideas in tow, you may be able to pursue inspiration. The best of luck to you.
From the #1 rule-breaker,