Start a Creative Fire with a Spark (Penny Rader)

Need some help fanning the spark of inspiration into a blazing fire of creativity?  Me, too, so I went poking around online.  I hope you find these excerpts helpful.

101 Ways to Spark Inspiration [Parisa Roohipour]

Parisa has a lot of fun ways to get that creative fire going.  I especially like Part 3, which is the link above, because it gives ways to engage all your senses.

56.  Find your favourite smell. Sweeten your world with it.
61.  … staring out the window on a bus or train is blissful, restful and perfect day-dreaming territory.
69.  Sit and listen. Close your eyes and just take in where you are right now.
70.  … Dive your hand into that bag of grain, puddle of mud, basket of yarn.
82.  Can you taste the words as they come out of your mouth?

13 Ways to Spark Intense Creativity [Dayne]

  1.  Brainstorm.
  2.  Change your approach.
  3.  Draw a mind map.
  4. Check out other industries.
  5.  Free write.
  6.  Use an online idea generator.
  7.  Ask for suggestions.
  8.  Start at the end.
  9.  Become an idea collector.
10.  Be someone else.
11.  Reword the challenge.
12.  Cube the challenge.
13.  Carry a notepad.

34 Unexpected Places to Find Writing Inspiration (And Become a Better Writer) [Tracy O’Connor]

Tracy has some terrific ideas.  I’m going to try these:  

  6.  Ask the children in your life to tell you a story or explain how they think something works.
14.  Visit Internet forums where people share their stories and experiences.
18.  Listen to the music you loved as a teen or young adult.
33.  Ask friends about the oddest story that happened in their family or their hometown.

I’m glad she mentioned these because I already find them helpful:

10.  Read every day.
29.  Make a collage by cutting words and pictures from magazines and newspapers.

7 Dazzling Ways to Ignite Your Creative Spark [Marelisa Fábrega]

1.  Toss in the kitchen sink.
2.  If You See a Good Idea, Bend Down and Pick It Up
3.  Release Your Need for Recognition
4.  What Will They Think
5.  Create a Shrine
6.  Use Affirmations
7.  Build a Mystery Box

She elaborates on each of these so I hope you read her entire post.

Can’t Start a Fire without a Spark [Leah Piken Kolida]

Bits of song, dream images, short phrases, little bits of shadow, and memory will often be the spark behind an idea that leads to a creation. A spark is just the starting point. It won't always develop the way it first began, just like a fire won't always spread the way you expect.

Be sure to check out the reader comments for more tips.

How Do YOU Use Music for Writing Inspiration? [Alicia Sparks]

We all know music can act as one of the best sources of writing inspiration. My “Hazard” story is just one way music has acted as inspiration for writing for me.  Sometimes I turn to music for writing certain scenes, or getting inside the heads of certain characters; other times, I turn on music in hope of breaking my writers block.

Then, there are unexpected times, like with my “Hazard” story, when music works like writing prompts.

Inspiration [Juliet Marillier]

…inspiration – the spark that lights the fire, the yeast in the mix, the potent ingredient in the alchemist’s brew. Inspiration makes us want to write even when times are tough. It wakes us up at night with a head full of ideas. It alerts us to the special moment of beauty, something we will capture later in words, images or music – the rising of a hazy moon, the singing of frogs in a pond, the odd shadows cast on a city street at nightfall, the utterances of a two-year-old lost in her imaginative world. It draws our attention to the sad, the pitiful, the heroic, the cruel, the paradoxical nature of human existence, and compels us to write about it.

Is Your Muse a Spoiled Brat? [Christine Tyler]

… I know you feel affectionately about your Muse. I know you think it's cute. But if you let this imaginary friend (who is really just YOU, mind you), walk all over you and make a bazillion demands before you can get any work done? You are a bad Muse-momma. You have spoiled your child.

Discipline, people. Make your Muse sit down and be good. If your Muse reminds you that you forgot the pretzels?

Sorry, but we're writing anyway. It's too bad. Grow up.

Rekindling the Romance of Writing [Jocelyn Anne]

Try a new tactic to rekindle the spark.  Write about something you never write about. …it’s going to get you back in the groove, back into the place where it thrills you to see the words form on the screen before you and where you sit back amazed that those just came from your mind.

The Spark of Inspiration

…inspiration, as well as passion, (like any fire) will inevitably die out if not nurtured or fueled properly.  In order to keep it burning within you, you must stoke it every once in a while.  For this, you can do many things.

Here are just a few ideas:
  • Keep a journal
  • Refer to inspirational quotes
  • Make a vision board
  • Meditate on your goals
  • Confer with others who share your passion

Let’s finish off with 25 Simple Mantras for Every Writer to Remember
 and Affirmations by Rita Rainville  and Writer’s Affirmations and Day Twenty-One of NaNoWriMo, Writer's Affirmations  and Affirmations for Writers.

Pick one or two, five or ten and say them out loud every day.  Better yet…write them own every day.  I’m going to start with these:

I only need to sit and write – the rest will work itself out.
I am a talented writer.
Words flow easily to the page.
I am a writer!  I am a writer!

     P.S.  Remember:Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” – Mary Lee Cook


    I'd love to hear your thoughts!


    Word Actress said...

    Great, great post. I don't tend to get stuck in my writing or need that inspirational kick-in-the-butt but I think that's because I am very much wanting to get my book (s) out into the world before they close the cover down over my head!!!

    I love asking my friend's toddlers about things because they don't try to self-edit or say what they think you want to hear. And I love mixing things up as one of the inspirational writer's suggests. That's the high we all get creating the worlds we hope readers will want to inhabit.

    You've got me pumped. I can't wait to sit down to write later.

    Penny Rader said...

    So glad you liked the post, Word Actress. You're so blessed to have so many stories wanting out.

    And I so love the idea about asking toddlers what they think. One of my granddaughters is still really hard to understand, but I can sure ask her sister or my other grandkiddoes. Or my sister's. :D Thanks for the idea.

    Melissa Robbins said...

    I liked the ask the kid one. My kids are SO imaginative and my eldest is old enough now that I tell her to write those stories down.

    Thanks for sharing these, Penny.

    Penny Rader said...

    How great that you encourage your kids to write their ideas down, Melissa. One of my daughters used to do a bit a writing when she was in high school. I need to ask her if she still does write. One of my sisters used to write. I wish she still did. Very talented.

    Joan Vincent said...

    Wow! Love the post and the graphics. What a neat package for all the information you gave us. Thanks Penny!

    Pepper Phillips said...

    Wow...great post. I'm forwarding the URL to WritingTips at goggle groups.


    Calisa Rhose said...

    I'm going through those links one at a time! Copy and paste, baby! Thanks Penny.

    Penny Rader said...

    Thanks, Joan! I was afraid I'd got a bit overboard with the pics. :D

    Penny Rader said...

    Thanks, Pepper! Is this the same group Donna C had?

    Penny Rader said...

    Thanks for dropping by, Calisa. Hope you find the links useful. Do you have favorites?

    Starla Kaye said...

    As always you gave us some great links. You're amazing!

    Penny Rader said...

    Thanks, Starla! I always hope the links are helpful to someone besides me. :D

    Nina Sipes said...

    Your blogs are always well thought out and so informative. This one was pretty too. Good job.