Where do we get inspiration?
It’s different with every writer I suppose but there are, I would imagine, some common places for inspiration. Myself, I will often read books in the genre I plan to write about. It gives me ideas for the story I’m working on and will often help me get into the right headspace. I remember wanting to write about the age of fighting sail at one point. A great high seas adventure with ship to ship battles and swordplay. However, being raised on the prairies, my experience with boats of any kind consists of the small fishing variety. How to write about the great schooners and frigates of the late 1700’s? I went to writers such as Patrick O’Brien and Dudley Pope. There writing gave me technical knowledge as well as great ideas for writing epic sea battles. But this also got me reading more than writing, which brings me to motivation.
How do writers get motivated?
One of the best motivators for me is other writers. If they are not inspiring me to write with their enthusiasm, rest assured they will guilt me doing something with their stares of “you should be writing”. Every year our writers group goes on two retreats. Although the running joke is that I just go for the food and time to relax, I actually do some writing. Having time away from everyday life gives you time to think. I also find that a good soundtrack helps. When I was writing the high seas adventure, I would listen to different epic concertos that made me think of the time period. That got me excited to start writing and see where the characters were going to take me.
In the end, everyone has to find their own sources of inspiration and motivation. Hopefully mine might give someone some ideas.