Find the right writing
When I first started writing, I
used to go to the park, the beach, or even hike to some majestic
mountaintop in hopes of finding the inspiration I needed to write.
Unfortunately, the beauty of the setting or the sounds and smells
overwhelmed my senses would usually distract me. Before long I would
find myself skipping rocks across the water, feeding the wild animals,
or even taking a nice nap in the sun; but I did little, if any, writing.
At home, I positioned my desk
near to the window with the best view, with the same hope of finding
that illusive inspiration; but again, I was easily distracted.
Fortunately, I finally figured out that I accomplished a lot more
writing with my desk tucked back in some out of the way corner, where I
could shut out the world. In the solitude of my cramped little
cubbyhole, my mind is finally free to transport to the fictional worlds
of my own making. Writing became as easy as recording the movies that
played across the screen of my imagination.
I use earplugs or headphones to
help me achieve the quiet I need, but other writers listen to music of
one type or other. Do whatever works best for you; it’s all about
closing out the world around you. Over the years, I’ve learned to adapt
to writing in public, such as libraries, coffee shops, or even at the
park. However, given the choice, I am, by far, the most productive when
writing at home in my cramped little cubbyhole.
Restore your creative
The many different ways that
writers recharge their creative batteries always fascinates me. Some
writers I know find their muse while going on walks, knitting, or
playing music. I remember reading about one famous novelist who went
kayaking between projects. Regardless of what that specific activity
might be for any of us, nearly all of us share this same basic need—we
Over the years, I have been
fortunate to benefit from the wisdom of some wonderful men and women
who have mentored me. I remember complaining to one of these mentors
how I badly needed a vacation. The stresses of building a ministry were
burning me out fast. I was sure that I needed two or three weeks
relaxing and having fun. Fortunately for me, this wise man taught me
that the secret to recharging my batteries was as simple as
break and doing something else
completely different in nature.
instance, if your work is sedentary, go for a walk. Conversely, if your
work involves heavy labor, find some way to exercise your mind.
I am not saying that vacations
are a bad thing—far from it. If a periodic escape to exotic places is
what works for you, then go for it. In fact, if you are going to any
one of the Greek Islands or to the Highlands of Scotland, then please
pack me inside your suitcase. But the best way for me to recharge is by
going on a walk, or even doing mundane household chores. Washing dishes
helps me think through upcoming scenes or simply enjoy a brief
diversion from my writing. As a matter of fact, I consider these breaks
from my writing to be the most important part of my creative process.
If my writing hits a dead end, I go outside and cut some firewood. It
hasn’t failed me yet.
Feed the intellect a diverse
I am a firm believer in reading
a broad spectrum of genres. Even if you write only one story type, you
will find that your stories will benefit from incorporating some of the
elements of other genres. Moreover, it will help to keep your own
writing style evolving. I personally read everything from the Bible to
thrillers and the classics plus historical, westerns, chick-lit, and
everything in between. I love how it keeps me fresh.
Above all, nurture your walk
If our spiritual lives are dead,
how can we expect our novels to inspire others? I have to be careful
here or the pastor side of me will start preaching. But don’t worry. I
promise to spare you any sermons today. I’ll let you off with a
recommendation to spend lots of time in the Word, prayer, devotionals,
Bible studies, and let’s not forget to worship.
Do you have anything to add?
If I have forgotten anything, or
if you want to share with me what works best for you, please drop me a
line at email@example.com.