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?