say lightning never strikes the same place twice, but in the case of
inspiration this is thankfully not the reality. However, the reality is that you’ve just a lot of time writing, publishing, and promoting your book, so at this stage, your inspiration cup doesn’t likely runneth over. Here are some easy tips I use when I want to reignite that flame and
passion for writing:
Tip #1: Find your grail!
that source of inspiration that works for you. Whether it is a song, a location, a poem,
or a painting, we all have that something that seems to excite our minds and emotions.
The truth is, physiologically, things that excite us and our minds make it
easier for new connections and ideas to form. For me it’s a nice Handelian
concerto or Bach fugue. Sometimes, it’s as simple as a walk outside at night when everything else is subdued, and sight and sound become secondary senses to
Tip #2: Read something different
don’t know about you, but whenever I read a good book, it reminds me of why I love
to write. Good writers have this profound away of capturing a reader and taking them on a powerful and unexpected journey. It is in this escape that I often
find inspiration to write. Often new ideas that come from this kind of inspiration
have nothing to do with what you have read, but it is often those who lit
up your passion in its early stages that can help to keep that flame burning.
For me it is writers like Kenneth Miller of “Only a Theory” and “Finding Darwin’s
God” or Stieg Larsson of the Dragon Tattoo Trilogy that remind me why I love
both reading and writing.
Tip #3: The “Job” Complex
November we had some discussions about promoting your book and how
important it is to stay proactive and relevant. But the other side of this
balance is to remember that you write because you love doing it; not for the
money, and not because you HAVE to. I call this the “Job Complex,” and it is an
all-too-familiar phenomenon. The fastest way to kill inspiration (which at its
core is just another way of saying creative and spontaneous idea generation) is
to try and approach it methodically and completely planned out.
We know all too
well when we don’t enjoy something and feel forced to do it, it can be the most
frustrating and monotonous exercise. It may sound cliché, but good ideas really
do only come to those who wait. Be patient with yourself. Your last book wasn’t built in a day, and so inspiration for more writing won’t be either.
Finally, just remember to take time for
yourself. Keep yourself healthy, active, and happy. Your mind is your gift, and
writing isn’t a passive regurgitation of facts or planned algorithms like working
in insurance or the stock market. The generation of these exciting novel
concepts is an active and sometimes exhausting process that requires a healthy mind and body.