Writing: Inspiration Part I

I’ve been contemplating and researching where inspiration comes from. This will be a sort of mini-series in my blog right now. This was not going to be my original post, but it kind of asked to be done.

So I’m watching The Fault in Our Stars and the cancer-ridden protagonist visits her favorite writer in Amsterdam.   He is, predictably, an alcoholic recluse with no social skills and a lot of unopened mail. Is this what we are fated to become as writers? Why are we depicted as this archetype of the unapproachable and uncaring hermit?

Is it Hemingway and Bukowski who have done this to our image? Or do we really have to be complete social miscreants in order to be bold and raw and creative? Do we get our inspiration from our lonely life or does our success drive us to this unyielding loneliness?

I’ve struggled a lot with various mental… idiosyncrasies. And I’ve often felt that I have to live some sort of tortured existence in order to produce art. But what if that’s not true? I’ve been reading Stephen King’s On Writing and his thought is, well, no. Just write. Like all the time, whenever you can. And live your life.

(And ok, yeah, King wrote a lot while on a lot of drugs. But he’s been sober for a lot of years too.)

And why would you be an asshole to your fans? I like to think I’d be humble and grateful. Also, I follow JK Rowling on Twitter and she just seems lovely.

Side note on this movie: who the fuck makes out in Anne Frank’s attic? And why did people cheer? Because the chick looked sick? Just because someone carries oxygen doesn’t mean they aren’t DTF.

Side note about this side note: full disclosure, I did write the first draft of this entry after drinking two glasses of wine. So maybe I should evaluate my life…

Side side side note: this movie did NOT make me cry. You can’t prove shit.

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2 thoughts on “Writing: Inspiration Part I

  1. Hey I just read your entry and you asked a lot of questions and this is my take on a few of them. When it comes to creativity the story should always ask to to be written. Believe me it it’s not asking, demanding even, don’t bother. A good idea is only a good idea for you if your story speaks to you. As for where does our creativity come from, I believe it comes from real life. The most perfectly written story means nothing if no one cares about the characters in it or can relate to it in some meaningful way. So study human behavior, in other words notice the people around you. Get to know the “why” behind the action that people take. Take normal ordinary people and situations and ask “What if?” What if that “Betty Crocker” Mom is guilty of robbing drugs stores? Why would she do that? For fun, she craves excitement or maybe her child needs medication she can’t afford to buy her? People never do anything in a vacuum and as a writer you need to find the why behind the action the people you write about take.

    Writing well does not require that you pick up debilitating bad habits. I know you know this, just saying. Even so writing is lonely work and can be stressful, especially if you are going through a rough patch. At the end of the day you have to put the words on the page, good words, and if there is a deadline involved here comes the stress. Sometimes people slip into bad habits as a way of dealing with it all. If you’re worried about this just set some good guidelines for yourself, as you do with everything else in life, and stick with it. If nothing else call your friends who really know how AWESOME you are and will happily remind you of that fact. We all need a pep talk from time to time.

    By the way I bought that Stephen King book too. It’s no longer in my library either. Yes you must put words on paper, but eventually you will probably will want them to be words you want to keep. So continue to learn about your craft. For Fiction writing I would recommend “The Elements of Fiction Writing” published by Writer’s Digest’s Books. This series does a really good job of walking you through story crafting.

    Well I hope this helps you stay creative, on the strait and narrow as you work, while you continue to learn about your craft. Stick with it and you will go far!

    Liked by 1 person

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