Tag Archives: creativity

Five Easy Ways To Become Inspired To Write

Suffering from a lack of inspiration? Major case of writer’s block? Try these five easy ways to get inspired to write!

  1. Reading. Seeing the characters, concepts, and ideas of other writers can stimulate your own creative juices.
  2. Silence.  Too much stress in your life? Take some time out to relax and watch your creativity shine.
  3. Fun. All work and no play makes for dull writing. See friends, go out, have fun—you might just have a memorable experience worth writing about!
  4. Others’ Stories. Go on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, or through your cell phone address book. Ask yourself what interesting things can be fictionalized from your friends’ experiences? A helpful note: If it’s embarrassing to them, change the details to protect your friendship.
  5. Writing Prompts. Still completely baffled? When all else fails, there are a wealth of writing prompts online.

What do you do when you’re out of ideas? Please share a comment to help other writers in this predicament!

You’d Better Be BOLD

Hey friends. It’s been a while…

This message is a simple one, but one that cannot be ignored: Your writing must be bold.

It’s common for aspiring writers to fall into one of these two traps:

1. Their ideas are radically intriguing, but they have no understanding of the structure of writing (which you need to know, even if you want to break it).

2. Their work is technically sound, but boring and/or extremely derivative.

This is not an either/or dichotomy. You need to know how to write well. All the stuff you can learn from this blog, or from a creative writing workshop, or a famous author’s guide, or from a BA or MFA program in Creative Writing is essential, but it’s not enough to establish yourself as a writer. That’s like thinking that because you bought a paintbrush you’re suddenly in the same league as Picasso.

Publishers are starving for original material. If you throw the same old recycled literary tropes their way, you’re not likely to get your work noticed. It doesn’t matter how much mastery you demonstrate over language and structure, if your writing is boring and derivative, you’re wasting your time.

Break new ground. Experiment. Yes, it can go horribly wrong, but writing is art, and like any other form of art it’s always evolving. If you don’t evolve, if you don’t challenge yourself, no one will take your writing seriously.

On that note, I’m privileged to have my poem “Big Boys” in Jeremiah Walton’s literary zine Fuck Art, Let’s Dance. Jeremiah is one of the most talented young poets I’ve come across, and even better than that is this man has a truly revolutionary spirit. Watch out for him. If you don’t know his name yet, you’ll know it soon enough.

Check it out by clicking here.

Excellent Writers Are Voracious Readers

“I never desire to converse with a man who has written more than he has read” – Samuel Johnson, English author

Excellent writers are voracious readers. There is no way around this point. If you are not a regular reader, your work will suffer.

Some may argue that writing is an exercise in imagination and can be successfully done independent of acquainting yourself with a wide variety of other writers. Please note the level of esteem and success of any writer who says that and then think twice about adopting that belief.

Reading is critical because it stimulates your literary imagination. You may read a work like Cormac McCarthy’s The Road and be inspired to write a new take on the post-apocalyptic novel. When you read the work of other authors, it stimulates the formation of ideas (and acts a surefire cure for writer’s block).

The other major reason why writers must be voracious readers is that through reading, a writer learns how successful writers tackle the fundamentals. You’ll learn how they structure their work, how they address topics, how they construct sentences, how they describe environments and individuals, how they express themes without being didactic. You’ll absorb much of it subconsciously, and when you have difficulties in the writing process, you’ll have a wide variety of works to draw from as templates to help you power through any challenges.

Reading other writers is not just a feel-good act, one that is optional. Reading other writers is the foundation on which all your future success will be built. It removes the whiff of dilettantism from your work. Read more, write more, and build your name!