By Somali K Chakrabarti
“I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o’clock sharp.”
Some attribute this quote to Somerset Maugham, others to William Faulkner, but the fact stated in the quote does ring a bell.
The Writer’s Block
A number of times, we find ourselves in a situation when the creative juices in our brain dry up. Ideas don’t crystalize and words don’t flow. This is what you call a writer’s block – a term previously reserved for writers and now extended to bloggers as well.
The block could last for a few hours or a few days or a few weeks, when you are not able to cook up any ideas. Inspiration simply doesn’t strike. It displays erratic behaviour, striking at its own will instead of yours.
It could indeed be an annoying situation when you want to write, but just can’t figure out what to write and how; all the more frustrating if you have deadlines to meet.
Is there a way by which we can influence inspiration so that instead of striking randomly at any point of time, it strikes habitually at some regular intervals?
I prefer to believe that it might be possible to train our minds to think in a particular manner that enables us to habitually draw inspiration from certain triggers. My reason for this belief is that initially when I started blogging inspiration would strike only once in a fortnight, but now it strikes almost every alternate day. Maybe, with practice and over a period of time the mind trains itself to think on certain themes in a round clock manner.
When inspiration strikes, ideas firm up in the crevices of the mind and words flow out with ease, like a stream of water gushing out of an orifice.
Where do creative ideas germinate from?
Good ideas rarely strike all of a sudden. Even a brainwave may result from certain thoughts that may have resided in some corner of your mind over a period of time.
A creative inspiration is often needed to trigger off those thoughts. The creative inspiration may come from looking at a work of art, or on hearing a great story, or while listening to music, or maybe while you take a walk in a garden. A creative inspiration may also come when you strongly feel about how something should be, perceive a conceivable gap in how things really are, and start working on your hunches for addressing it.
How to find inspiration for blog writing?
Here are some tips to help you to find inspiration for writing blog regularly.
Discussions – Discussions with like-minded people can be a great source of inspiration. One creative thought may spark another. An engaging or an uplifting discussion expands your mind in some way, thereby creating the condition for other ideas to emerge.
Prompts – Writing prompts help at times by narrowing the focus and thus allowing you to think on a theme or a pointer. Prompts often help in maintain the schedule. However prompts can sometimes get restrictive and may or may not work for all.
Identifying triggers – Triggers work differently for different people. By identifying the conditions that trigger off ideas, one can recreate those conditions. I hardly get ideas when I am looking into the laptop. Most times the ideas occur while doing some other mundane work and my inspiration for writing haikus comes from looking at beautiful images of nature. Likewise, if you get inspired by listening to an inspirational talk or music, or by watching a movie, by reading a book, by looking at art work, or while taking a walk in the garden, you can repeat these activities more often.
Taking a break – At times, if you feel knackered, at times it is best to take a break for replenishing your creative energies and come back recharged. Fresh ideas will start cropping up in a rested mind.
A good piece of creative writing
“Words are a lens to focus one’s mind. “– Ayn Rand
Good creative writing, in my opinion, requires the presentation of a good idea in a way that elicits the desired response. Use of ornamental language without a good idea or a value proposition to the reader or without a gripping plot falls flat. Also, a good idea if not presented properly will not interest the reader.
“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” –Anton Chekov
So, for the continuous influx of good ideas it is imperative that we make inspiration to strike regularly.
Having said that, I am still trying for inspiration to strike every day in a scheduled manner.
Tell me how do you inspire yourself to write regularly?
This post is a response to the question posed by Deeshani Batra in her post Sunshine Blogger Award:
What is the most difficult part of the writing process, according to you?
Before I end I would like to thank Deeshani Batra and Shweta Dave for nominating me for Sunshine Blogger, Ashish Kumar for nominating me for Very Inspiring Blogger Award and Nancy Seeger for nominating me for The Leibster Award. Sorry Nancy for taking a hell lot of time to respond.
I know I am bending the rules and not adhering to the formats. Honestly speaking, have lately written about myself (thanks to Ravish Mani ) , so avoiding that. But then, keeping with the spirit of blogging and writing I will let the ideas flow.
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