Wednesday, 22 August 2012

When Inspiration Strikes

A few mornings ago I was woken up at 5:30am by my husband as he was leaving for work. Needless to say I was exhausted and promptly turned over and tried to fall back to sleep. But I couldn't. My mind would not turn back off once it had turned on. I simply could not stop my thoughts from running though everything... from what I had to do that day to what I should have done better the day before. Then suddenly it hit me! A new plot for a new novel.

Surprisingly, I had not been thinking of anything remotely similar to the plot that suddenly occurred to me. It was entirely a fluke.

Later that day I was doing the dishes and listening to some music when I was hit again! It must have been the lyrics that put the plot in my mind, but for the second time that day I had thought of a new outline for a novel. That adds up to 8 total plotlines floating around in my mind and outlined in my notebook.

Those two occurrences got me thinking of all the circumstances in which I find inspiration. It can happen while you are performing an ordinary task, such as my washing dishes, or it can come to you when you are doing research, watching a program on TV, or observing people in the foodcourt at the mall. I have found inspiration in many odd places.

I have likewise suffered from a lack of inspiration. I have sat staring at my computer screen with my hands poised above my keyboard, just waiting for the right word, right sentence, right anything to pop into my head... but nothing would come. It is times such as those that I believe walking away from  your project will help your mind work. Go for a walk, watch a program on TV, ride a bike, or do some household cleaning. Eventually the right thoughts will occur to you.

Have you ever suffered from a lack of inspiration? What did you do to make it come back? Where is the oddest place you have been inspired?


  1. Love the lightbulb! :)

    Inspiration can be your best friend or worst enemy depending on whether it is bestowing ideas on you or giving you a blank slate to look at - and you are so right about it striking when you least expect it. A writer's mind is always unconsciously working on the next story, until something your mind's eye sees triggers the idea. Then it's up to us to jot it down and let it grow when the time is right. :)

    1. Thanks! There are lots of great pictures one can find on Google. :)

      I completely agree. It's remarkable how the mind works. And you're right, I'm constantly thinking of my next novel... and the one after that... and the one after that. The list goes on. I'm always thinking up things; that's why my notebook has become indispensable!

  2. One time I had a burst of inspiration just after I went to sleep. I finished a notepad because I was writing so quickly and I promptly fell asleep the moment I finished. It was awesome! :)

    1. That's too funny! I think that I've had inspiration while I was asleep, but I only dreamt that I wrote it down... in the morning I was very disappointed because I didn't remember what inspired me, and nor did I have anything to show for it. You're lucky yours turned out so well!