Posted by: Katie B | January 15, 2010

How to Write a Book: Item #3: Inspiration

The Boardwalk

How do you actually write a book?  Well, you have to be inspired, right?  Sounds simple.  Inspiration.  I mention it a lot.  I know I need it.  I know it comes to me.  But I don’t really understand what it is, or how to consistently have it available.  That is the challenge.

In order to write, you have to find what inspires you.  Again, sounds simple – kind of.  Music inspires me, most of the time.  Beautiful landscapes inspire me but in more of a spiritual way, not in a way that makes me grab the pen.  Reading about high school and college classmates’ achievements inspire me, especially if they are in the arts or entertainment fields.  The jealousy that arises (yes, I’ll admit it) drives me to write, but the catalyst isn’t positive.  And my writing reflects it. 

Once you find the inspiration, you need to be able to chanel it at will.  This is, in my mind, that hardest part.  The inspiration always comes upon me when I am away from the computer.  Lot of good the musical inspiration does my writing when I am stuck in traffic on the parkway.  And by the time I sit to write, poof!, it is no where in sight.  Where did it go?  Why can’t I get it back – right now!  I’m ready and waiting, but it is no where in sight.

So what to do?  I actually don’t quite know.  When you find out, please share the info.

In the meantime, here is one suggestion:  I saw Miguel Gutierrez and the Powerful People perform their piece “Last Meadow” at the Abron Arts Center, Grand St, Manhattan last Friday night.  Wow.  If you ever have the means to see one of Miguel’s pieces, run, don’t walk.  To make sure you don’t miss him, join his group on Facebook.  You’ll get emails regarding his schedule and upcoming events.  What an inspiration. 

My mind was on fire watching his show.   These incredibly talented performers move through a sequence of uniquely original acts, taking hold of the subconscious creative vortex of your brain.  You can’t stop.  You are awakened, inspired, in a positive and enlightening way.

I took that sensation and was able to parley it into writing.  And it lasted for a few days, a rare treat.  So my suggestion to you is to find your Miquel and piggyback on his creativity.  He won’t mind.  He will probably be flattered.  And then share what you found.  We will all be thanking you!

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