What do you do when you’re motivated to write, but lack the creative inspiration to get started? This is a question every writer struggles with. As a New York Times best-selling author, author John Perry has a few tricks up his sleeve to keep the creative juices flowing and stay inspired to write. From shifting your focus, to taking it one step at a time, keeping a journal, and joining a writer’s circle, these tips from an accomplished writer can help keep you inspired.
Do something else
Sometimes the most productive way to get inspired is to focus on something else. According to Author John Perry, reading your favorite novel or watching an inspiring television show or movie can help provide that inspirational spark. Finding inspiration can also be as simple as taking a walk, having a conversation with a friend, or watering your plants. A change in scenery or in your environment may help to freshen things up. Take a walk, sit in another room, visit your neighborhood coffee shop, listen to other people’s dialogue, or observe the way people interact with one another.
Take it one step at a time
The secret to success in writing a book, as with any big project, is to take it one step at a time. While the task as a whole can seem overwhelming, writing a chapter or writing a single page is an achievable goal. Author John Perry explains that putting ‘write a book’ on your to-do list is far more intimidating than ‘do 2 hours of research’ or ‘brainstorm’. The smaller you can break your tasks up, the easier it will be to overcome the anxiety that can paralyze a writer at times. John Perry explains that this tactic can reduce the intimidation factor, and that a few focused hours a day can add up to a lot.
Keep a Journal
Inspiration is not a switch that can be easily turned on and off. Inspiration can strike at any time, and having a journal or notebook handy will help you help capture those inspirational bursts when they happen. Even the smallest of fragments, ideas, and observations can turn into a compelling story. To make journaling truly effective, try to set aside time every week to review what you’ve written. Don’t throw anything away. You never know which little scrap of a thought could be the kernel of your million-dollar idea!
If you’re serious about writing, set a daily writing goal and stick to it. Make yourself accountable. To reinforce your commitment, find other aspiring writers to talk with. It’s easy to let yourself down, but difficult to let other people down. Joining a writing group can help keep you inspired and motivated to continue writing. Author John Perry claims that while writing tends to be a solo pursuit, there are times when it can lead to frustration, a sense of isolation, and a lack of inspiration. Not only can writing groups keep you accountable, but they can also help you overcome your writing challenges, teach you to give and receive feedback graciously, provide a space to learn from others’ mistakes, and share helpful information.