inspiration and cake // a guest post by cait7:00 AM
Yes, that's right. THE Cait. The one and only, the dragon, the Paper-Fury-Cait. If you don't know who she is already, just give it a few days. You'll learn her name rather quickly once she's conquered your world and her face (or, the books in front of her face) are plastered on every surface you can possibly see.
i'm just ahead of the curve, sucking up to her before she takes over. can't hurt. Obviously, show her some love. And also cake and your eternal allegiance. That can't hurt.
It could be argued that inspiration is the most important thing in a writer's life. It could also be argued that cake is the most important thing in a writer’s life because you gotta eat to live, kids. But I'm not actually here to talk about the benefits of cake! I'm here to talk strictly about writing! (Hold me to that.) And I'm enormously glad that Aimee asked me to guest post (she is The Writing Master after all) on the topic of inspiration. So today I'm going to list 5 questions about inspiration that you definitely didn't ask, but probably wanted to ask and if you don't, look at you! You're asking them now! Lovely! #MindControl
- Movies and TV Shows // because they inspire me visually and since I have the visual imagination of a turnip, this is crucial.
- Reading All The Books Of Ever // not to copy but to learn what I can do, how to shape scenes, how pacing works, how to keep audiences engaged.
- Listening To Epic Music // I don't listen to music while I write, but when plotting? Yes please and thank you! There's nothing like a dramatic soundtrack to give you the idea to make your characters fall in love and then get stabbed, etc. etc.
- Pinterest // Because there's nothing like thousands of beautiful pictures to spark everything from a scene to a complete novel.
- Listening To Conversations // I have indeed stolen many a conversation my family has had. If my sibling does something embarrassing, I squirrel it away to add into a book. (Shh, they don't know this.)
- Letting My Mind Wander // I think it's really important for writers to have daydreaming time. Seriously, just look out the window or lie on your face on the carpet. Let your mind drift. Conjure up all the things that inspire you and smoosh them into a story.
Never let your inspiration pause! Keep pushing it further and further until either (A) you get an amazing idea that sends you hollering to the computer to write down because it's brilliance or (B) your head explodes. Aim for the first. If the latter happens, well... I didn't write this post. I WASN'T HERE AND IT'S NOT MY FAULT.
|this is the cait, isn't she fabulous?|
My trusty guide on knowing whether the inspiration is good is just: how much does it excite me??? Is it still exciting after a week? Two weeks? FORTY TWO YEARS IN THE DESERT??? Then it's good.
(Note: I do not recommend spending spending 42 years in the desert. Nasty WiFi connection. Little to no cake. Chances of death by camel bites = high percentages.)
The unfortunate fact is: writing is not always agreeable. In fact most of us would agree it is decidedly disagreeable a lot of the time and we want to smack it in the face with 9 bricks and then go talk to ice cream about our problems.
So what inspires me to keep writing when this happens??? The very simple fact of I love dissolving into my writing. I love the idea of being published someday. I love the idea of making some poor unsuspecting reader end up sobbing into their teacup at 2am.
Write a list of reasons why you love to write. Glue it to your face. (Or, well, like the wall is an option too I guess?) And every time you think your ideas are dumb, your inspiration well has run dry, or you're completely stuck on how to even word -- remember why you write.
And don't forget: in order to put out art, you must devour art. Let other artists' inspire you! Let cake inspire you! Let the limitless possibilities of the fact that you can write whatever you want in all the universe inspire you! And if all else fails: pinterest, dude, just go to pinterest.