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My Freedom Flame

Motivating Writers Worldwide

Four Exciting Ways to Find Writing Inspiration

 

Exhausted from work? Too tired to carry on and see another day? Well, you’re in luck because I’m going to give you four tips that will help you find writing inspiration.

Kind of cool, right?

The fact is you, yes you, can find inspiration just about anywhere, if you know where to look. We’re going to search deep inside ourselves for such inspiration, such as the search for that initial motivation to write.

What was it that caused the motivation in the first place?

That’s what we’re looking for right here, right now.

So, let’s search for that long-term inspiration today that will light a fire in you.

 

Music

Music does strange things to us. It takes us back to another place, another time, back to a group of people, a time when we may’ve felt elated, depressed, inspired.

The reason I placed music so high is the fact it’s associated with the other three little-known ways listed below.

We embark on a journey when we listen to music.

When I hear, say, New Miserable Experience or Congratulations, I’m Sorry albums from Gin Blossoms, I’m catapulted back to Wintersville, Ohio, the town I grew up.

But I have more memories than just an awesome childhood.

I spent a summer working out at the local track with a great friend before we parted ways. It was truly one of the best times of my life, if not the best days of my life.

And yes, remember that creative nonfiction piece I was telling you about in a previous post?

Yep, it’s really a memoir that speaks of my early days working as a personal trainer, all the way to my massive breakup with the profession after becoming disheartened by it, to the great comeback that’s being set up right now.

 

Places

I revealed a huge hint regarding places, by associating them with music.

But think about it. Where were you when you were first inspired to write?

Why did this particular place spark the creative juices?

Know what’s funny?

The place you might be thinking of might not even be a real place.

Maybe mom and dad read you a story about Neverland when you were young and you immediately were inspired to write your own work. Your own Neverland.

Or your own version of Hogwarts? Narnia?

Did you take a vacation to Scandinavia and were immediately inspired by the beautiful scenic landscape?

Where were you when you were initially inspired to write?

Go back to that place, even if it’s a virtual tour. If it was a novel, read it again. I guarantee you’ll find that initial fire inside you once more.

 

People

Again, taken from the first way of inspiration.

This is especially true for those of you who write nonfiction.

Who inspired you to write and what kind of plot?

Are you still friends with them?

Or have you gone your separate ways?

Really think about this.

They might have a lot to do with the plot of your work, or perhaps you’re like me and tend to base every single character in your work on people you’ve met, worked, and were friends with over the past few years.

Why did they inspire you to hit the keyboard?

What kind of relationship did you have with them that you just had to write?

You will find a lot of answers and perhaps a lot of inspiration.

For me and the creative nonfiction piece I’m working on it was the gym staff, my old client base, my workout buddies, including the one I mentioned earlier.

I did base a lot of characters in Lord of Columbia on them, but the (sometimes) wild memories I shared with these people, I knew someday a novel would be written. There are too many stories to tell in the Tales from the Gym Office.

I could probably write a three-book box set, to be honest, and still have stories left over.

How my boss and I were never fired for the things that went on in our offices I’ll never know. And the colorful people.

You get the gist of it.

 

Time Periods

Finally, time periods come last because it sums up the previous three.

If you read the first three closely, you probably found a little pattern.

Music takes you to a time period.

Places take you to a time period.

People take you to a time period.

All written works occur in a time period, and again the first three can relate to fiction. Maybe you listen to fantasy-based music as I do and it takes you to a place like Neverland? I don’t think I have to explain the cast and characters.

I drew most of my inspiration for Lord of Columbia from Harry Potter, as it’s not even a secret these days, and the series is what I continually reverted back to.

I listened to music that reminded me of Hogwarts, mainly symphonic, pagan, and power metal, with composers like Thomas Bergersen and even some Disney songs scattered in there.

I’m lucky to have grown up around a landscape that is Hogwartian in nature, with bounding hills that eventually turn mountainous, endless forest, and few urban areas so the sky lights up on those clear nights.

Again, you should see what I’m talking about now.

 

If You’re Feeling Down

Go back to these four cornerstones.

Play some music, as it’ll always help, no matter what. I love to pair it with one of my two daily workouts.

Go to places that first inspired you. I don’t have to go far. I can sit in the parking lot of an abandoned grocery store, park my car, sit on top the hood on a spring, summer, or autumn night, gaze to the west, and watch the sun set behind the white water tower, which serves as the gateway to the bounding countryside.

If I pair it with listening to music, it automatically brings back the people, my favorite people, the workout partner whom I spent the whole summer of 2014 with, wondering what she’s doing now, and when she’s coming back.

Aha, see?!

You know where those lyrics came from, right?

Bam, it just took me back to the time period.

As crazy as this post sounds, I insist this works, and you’ll be glad you undertook it.

Thanks for reading.

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2 Comments

  1. Great tips! I actually find most of my inspiration in people. Often it’s in the snippets of conversations that pass me by. I fill in the blanks and come up with my own story 😁

    • Todd Matthews

      February 10, 2019 at 5:09 pm

      Thanks! And yep, I can definitely relate. So many of my book characters are based on people I’ve met. I like your strategy, too!

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