Getting Inspired to Write

24 Feb

calliope2Some of us write for a living, and some for personal enjoyment. Or both. Any writer will admit that there are days when the muse just isn’t accessible. Call it writer’s block or just plain lack of inspiration, the inability to write is frustrating. In an agency environment that’s based upon productivity, writer’s block is an unfortunate inconvenience.

I’ve used the word “Blogamucil” to describe my tricks for more regular blogging. Laughing about it helps, but it doesn’t always solve the problem. Trouble is, there’s no cure for writer’s block. But there are things that can reset your creativity. Here are some of the things I’ve found to help:

  1. Walk around the block, or up and down a few flights of stairs. A change in perspective and a good dose of adrenalin can release new thoughts.
  2. Have a conversation with someone who will make you laugh. Often when I am blocked, I am simply taking myself or my writing task too seriously. Humor interjects new perspective into stale ways of thinking.
  3. Expose yourself to something artistic to encourage feeling, rather than analytical thought. This could be music, visual art, someone else’s  writing or dance.  The point is to short-circuit the cerebral processes and get to your soul, which is authentic and grounded—and also the basis for your creativity. This applies to all writers—creative or technical. Even when writing is structured, it is an organic process that must be inspired by something crafted for a unique purpose. When it feels forced or humdrum, we are not at our best.
  4. Learn more about someone else’s creative process. Reading biographies or watching documentaries about creative people always inspires me. PBS recently ran programs about two of my favorites: Jerome Robbins and Billy Strayhorn. Having some insight into others’ own self-doubt and creative challenges is reassuring. Or, instead of learning about a famous person’s creative muse, just talk with a good friend who creates.

What inspires you to create? Tell me how you reach the muse.


2 Responses to “Getting Inspired to Write”

  1. Gary Moneysmith February 24, 2009 at 9:39 pm #


    You should watch this, it’s great:


  2. gmonteith February 25, 2009 at 8:49 am #

    When I come up against writer’s block I sometimes have to just let it sit for a day. If I can’t do that, I’ll get a Coke, come back to my desk and spend a few minutes surfing around to what is being written in the newspapers — including the foreign press (English versions of course). Sometimes engaging my brain in something interesting but completely unrelated to my work gives me a little bump that gets me over the wall.

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