Ooh, I’ve got a hottie for you this week. Not only am I sharing my own little quirks for finding writing inspiration, I have drafted in more sassy writers from my sparkling new Facebook group Chick Lit and Prosecco, to share their precious secrets.
More about the group and these sizzling writers later, but if you haven’t joined the group yet, get on over there! We want you.
More About this Writing Inspiration
Aha, so writing inspiration; I had always assumed it was a given. But from hanging out in the virtual world of bloggers, I was surprised to learn this: there are two types of writer. The type that cannot stop thinking of ideas and will never have enough hours to write them all down. And the sort who live in a perpetual panic as to where the next snippet of writing inspiration is flipping well hiding.
Could there also be a hybrid? A being who bounces between the extremes, depending on what life throws at them? If you are one of these in-betweenies, please tell! Maybe this happy medium is in fact where sanity lies. Hmm, now there’s a thought…
Writing Inspiration – Too Much or Not Enough?
Anyway, I am of the too many ideas ilk. I’m bombarded by these little inklings day and night. I can scarcely take a peaceful shower without my muse jumping in with a back scrubber and shouting, “but what about this?” (Yes, bugger off, fella. You can see I haven’t brought my quill.)
And then there’s the sort who struggle for writing inspiration. They have deadlines lurking, but those words are often shirking. Ideas evade them, running for the hills like naughty badgers in the night. You may see these poor writers dancing through the streets with coloured nets, trying to catch their next whimsical notion before it bobs away on a breeze.
Writing Inspiration – Where Art Thou?
So all of this got me thinking. Where do I get my writing inspiration from? And here’s what I came up with.
By venturing out into the real world of actual people
*Gives a small, frightened shudder*
What – where the living humans congregate? But these online people are so nice! I mean, what kind of writer wants to be out living life, when they could be huddled safely indoors, writing about it? Eek.
But if I convince myself I’m on a research mission, gathering input on how real life is meant to look, it adds an element of sport.
And now and again, the odd conversation surprises me.
I utter a random thing for want of anything useful to say, and it sparks all sorts of gems. Communication, huh. Who knew! It’s like the universe is rewarding me for bothering to put my coat on. This getting out and about lark can be a bit of alright.
By following the news
Now, anyone who knows me well will know I’m not a big fan of that show they call news. For a start it should be labelled bad news, as nothing good ever comes of it.
Secondly, there’s nothing that new about it. You can be sure it will feature war, suffering and some twatty politician saying something absurd.
But now and again you’ll find a nugget. A thing that gets you thinking, a trove to be explored.
For instance, I’m quite partial to a bit of random jibber-jabber from the local radio. I once heard an eccentric old dear talking about the explosions she caused in her shed with her clandestine hobby. She was the incarnation of the spirited Mrs Miggins from the second novel I’m working on. It was like she’d bustled out from the pages and given me a poke:
‘Hey you, news dodger. These sneaky shed shenanigans have got my name all over them. Make it so!’
So no plot spoilers, but if I ever finish book two, just keep your eye out for that innocent-looking housekeeper with the cotton wool hair…
By sending a shout out to my “muse”
Now I’m not sure if you’re down with this whole muse thing. Plus I’ll admit, the idea you’re meant to ‘stroke it’ is just plain creepy.
But if we think of a muse as a kind of writing inspiration elf, I can live with that.
Personally, I can’t just sit down in front of a blank screen and conjure stuff up. I have to start with a seed, which will be delivered as a small parcel of writing inspiration when I least expect it. Once I have this seed, I plant it somewhere in the muddiness of my imagination and wait for the tickle of the shoots taking root.
And thus the muse, or elves of inspiration, are forewarned that I’m ready to receive their offerings. When they too are prepared, they will respond. The ideas will roll in like a great tidal flood, saturating the little shoots until they are a woven maze of branches.
But beware, these tiny elves are jokers.
They dish out their best stuff only when it is most inconvenient. When you don’t have a pen because you’re negotiating a toddler meltdown, or going for a run (so I vaguely recall). When you’re trying to bloody sleep. The elves will test you to see how much you want your precious tree to thrive.
When life is mean
When life gives you lemons, err…make a book about lemonade?
As a writer, even the darkest cloud sent to engulf you seems to have a tiny glint of purpose. You are meant to write about the cloud. To get inside its fluffy bits and roam around. Knowing how it feels to be in the shadow of that cloud will give your writing a beautiful empathy, but also maybe your words will help to pull another casualty through the fog someday.
You can find these online or on sites like Pinterest. They are make-believe scenarios which you can choose to write about, eg your cat gets abducted by aliens and comes back expecting twin dinosaurs.
Interesting, but I prefer to make my own fun. My version involves getting my reporter’s hat on and taking writing inspiration from random snippets of gossip. Of course all details are completely altered. (Friends – don’t look for yourselves in my books; I don’t intend to get sued!)
But thanks to whoever told me about the lady escorts at the races (you may see this in book one), and the thing about strange men from dating sites sending photos of their manhoods? How could I resist divulging a perky tale like that…
You may have read the roller coaster tales of my chick lit novel writing before. If not, it will make you chuckle.
Even more excitingly, did you read the one about my new Facebook Group – Chick Lit and Prosecco? Because reader/writer friend, you don’t want to miss that party. It’s a chatty, gorgeous group full of talented writers and chiquitas who are crazy in love for chick lit. I feel so honoured to run the group – it feels like every day is a Friday, and I’ve learned sooo much.
We talk publishing secrets, writing tips, take a sneak peek at new cover designs, chat about what we’re reading and writing, play around with silly GIFs, make trailers for our books, ask for reading recommendations. Hell, we just go wherever the mood takes us – we’re wild and free!
And what’s more, we want you there. It’s a ‘the more the merrier’ non-stop shimmy of fun. If you’re intrigued to know more, FOLLOW THIS LINK and take a peek at what’s in store.
Writing Inspiration from Other Writers
For a bit of sport, I asked the other writers in the Chick Lit and Prosecco group to tell us what sparks their writing inspiration. Here are a few snippets. If you’d like to read the rest, you can of course have a nosy at the full thread in the group.
Where does Lucy Keeling find her writing inspiration?
“Hmmm… lots of places.
– Twitter 😂
– Any sort of journey when I’m not driving and can zone out.
– I usually get a scene or a character, maybe some sort of a situation and go from there.”
Lucy’s debut novel will be published next year by Choc Lit – she was one of the winners of their Search for a Star competition! You can follow this gorgeous star in the making on Twitter, where she is @Lucy_K_Author.
And what about that fabulous blogger from My Anxious Life?
“As a stay at home Mum, struggling with sense of self and loss of adult outlets, I started blogging. Now I have the chance to flex my creative and intellectual muscles, I find little moments of inspiration come to me daily, from all around me. The trick is in harnessing them!”
You can follow Jo’s inspirational and honest tales on her blog My Anxious Life. It’s one of my absolute favourites so get on over there!
Katie Kenzie and her quirky cup and saucer
“My current book was inspired by a cup and saucer my writing group used as a writing prompt.”
Katie is a magical realism writer, currently working on her first novel – which is set to be fantastic. You can follow her wonderful journey on the K A Kenzie blog.
Florence Keeling on writing inspiration
“I find inspiration from everywhere. Song lyrics, on dog walks even from an advert for a bank once.
The inspiration for my debut novel Reflected Destinies came from an abandoned house I pass while walking my dogs and I imagined all the different stories the walls had seen.
My children’s novel grew from my two huskies. They are so comical that I just wanted to write about them and their personalities.
Just the other day I saw someone packing their camper van up to go on holiday and that’s how my new novel Travelling Light started.”
Florence is a multi-talented writer, with four published books under the names Florence Keeling and Lily Mae Walters. She is a beautiful, funny soul and makes me giggle most days with her funny little comments in the Chick Lit and Prosecco group. You can follow her on Twitter as @KeelingFlorence – go and take a peek!
Tell us about Kiltie Jackson too!
“My debut novel, ‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle’ was inspired by a song that, even now, many years later, is still much loved.
The song has a line which states that when the woman tells the man she loves him, it puts him off feeling the same way.
This inspired the idea of ‘So, what if the woman DIDN’T conform to the norm, didn’t fall in love with the rock star and, as a result, he falls in love with her instead?’
‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle’ was born. I’ve never revealed the actual song nor the artist performing it because I want people to create their own ‘Pete Wallace’ and not be swayed by knowing who I had in mind as I wrote the book.
My second novel, ‘An Artisan Lovestyle’ had its origins in a dream.
From nowhere, I had a dream about a ‘someone’ (you know how dreams are) who had died and was waiting in Death’s Waiting Room.
They were given the chance to live again but they had to complete 3 tasks within a year to stay alive after that. They would have 3 freckles on their wrist which would disappear each time a task was accomplished.
When I woke up, it was so strong in my head that I couldn’t wait to write it. I expanded on the above but that dream is the most integral part of the story.”
Kiltie Jackson is an author of uplifting women’s fiction, and is quite frankly delightful, as well as super talented. You can check out her books, and lots of other glowing book reviews, on the Kiltie Jackson website.
If you enjoyed this post, don’t be shy. I would dance for joy if you’d subscribe to my blog, share this post on social media and/or add a little comment in the box. Blogs need your love, so please do tell me – what inspires you in life? I’m intrigued to know…
If you want to read more about the Chick Lit and Prosecco Facebook group, check out my earlier post. It’s full of fun!
Want to know more about this Brazen Mummy chick? My About Me page is packed with cheeky gossip. Enjoy! xx
– Featured image – Butterfly – Emkae Junior – Pexels