What inspires your writing?
Hints of spring waft in the air and birds sing, and I consider what inspires me in my writing. Walking in nature is one of my favorites. Other writers a big inspiration to me, so I asked several to share what inspires their writing. I hope you enjoy their answers as much as I do.
Madeleine L’Engle once said that being a writer can sometimes feel like you’re a battlefield with ‘a dark angel of destruction and bright angel of creativity wrestling.’ I think life can feel this way sometimes too. And I am drawn to write by both the dark and the bright, but especially the magic and surprise and so-very-human refusal to be less vivid just when it feels like the dark angel is about to take us down.
Sandra can be found at http://sandranickel.com
Reading other books definitely inspires my writing; not only do I want to take certain stories in a new direction, but I also feel that excitement of discovering a new world and want to create my own. Being in nature also inspires writing, mostly because I let my mind wander as I walk and enjoy the sounds and sights around me. My thoughts will touch on this and that, and often, a story emerges.
Robin can be found at http://robinreadsnwrites.com/
As to inspiration, the biggest thing that inspires my writing is probably places. I’ve lived in 22 different houses spanning 9 states and three countries, and both the geography and the culture of all those places provide tons of writing fodder. A recent book I wrote was inspired by watching my in-laws’ bicultural prowess between rural mountain Idaho where they came from, and wealthy urban southern California where they’ve spent the past 40 years.
Rose can be found at http://rose-green.blogspot.com
Everyone needs stories, but not everyone has the skill to tell them. The moments which most inspire my writing are the ones where I am able to give words to a story that someone else needs.
Sandra can be found at http://www.onecobble.com/
I try to notice things around me, and put myself in situations where I will learn or do interesting things that will inspire me. I’ve received story ideas from Baby Animal Days, visiting the aquarium, indulging myself with a trip to an art museum, traveling to exotic locations, and becoming friends with people who are completely different than me. I also try to read widely: classic novels, science news, and history books on very specific subjects, like batteries. Most of the time there will be one or two ideas that stick out to me which I’ll record and stew over until I find the right match for a story idea.
Katherine can be found at katherinecowley.com
Sometimes the books I read provoke questions, which spark my imagination. When questions from my fiction and non-fiction reading find their way to each other, that’s when the sparks start a fire. “What the heck is wrong with Heathcliff and Cathy? How would it feel to be slightly unhinged, like her? And what if, instead of the moors, I lived in the Ozarks during the Civil War? What would happen if the revivalist preacher wanted to save my demon-possessed soul and marry me, but the only person who understood me was this outlaw, hated and feared by everyone else?” My questions and curiosity inspire me to find the answers within the pages of my own book.
Christy can be found at http://christylenzi.com/
My writing is inspired by sunlight and shadows, though not in equal measure. I’m drawn to birdsong and rosebuds, and the skirted palm trees that rise from the desert floor, fronds lifted toward an impossibly blue sky. But I’m intrigued, too, by the mysteries that lurk just beneath the surface of things…the soul’s desperate yearnings, whispered secrets in the dark. Writing invites me to stay fully present for (in) all of this—to appreciate each moment for the miracle it is, and to bear witness to the truth as I see it.
Melodye can be found at http://melodyeshore.com/
Thank you to all these writers for sharing what inspires their writing. Their inspirations reinvigorate me and feed my creative energy. Feel free to comment on this post. I’d love to read your comments about what inspires you.
Sarah Blake Johnson