First, let me acknowledge my absence for the week. I did pop in to read and comment on other people’s blogs, but as far as writing one myself was concerned I drew a mental blank on anything worth speaking about. There were brief moments of intelligence this week, but nothing note worthy enough to make an appearance here on its own.
Now onto that inspiration I mentioned in the title. I’ve really been struggling/beating myself up lately over my inability to get some quality writing accomplished. I can’t accept two months worth of failures and as my “7 on the 7th” post lurks around the corner I’m fiendishly trying to find a way to complete something of value. And so I spent some time revisiting all of the things that made me want to write this book in the first place. What sorts of things you might be wondering (or maybe not, but I’m going to tell you anyway)?
Obviously music seems ever important to most of the writers I know and/or admire, but I am constantly submerged in sound. Even if I wasn’t trying to write a book, music is a MUST – ALWAYS. While the playlist I’ve created for my book is helpful, it doesn’t seem as strong of an inspiration anymore. But when played while handling a few other objects of inspiration it really brings the story back to life in my mind.
By objects, I’m referring to the following: Pictures of the people that I think of as my characters (were my book a movie), smelling scents that represent the scent my characters carry, pictures of the landscape I envision for my book, pictures or sketches of outfits I imagine my cast wearing, and sketches and layouts of the buildings/houses they spend most of their time.
One of my goals for the month was to complete the sketches for Bryce & Brynn’s family’s home and I’ve been spending my lunches doing so this week. I finally realized that the house I’d pictured in my head was a dream house I’d stumbled across a few years ago with some tweaks of my own so I found the house plans & exterior pictures, chopped them to bits to fit my minds layout, and have been recreating them in AutoCad. I’ve also hand drafted nearly their entire property on graph paper and bum wad (which I will warn you is filled with trees – 25 acres worth). I fully intend on wrapping these drafts up by the 7th and will post for those interested. (All of this attention to detail is probably not something all writers do, but please remember that my first creative ability and dream was architecture so it’s just the way my brain works.)
The point of all of this though is that just surrounding myself with these things is making my characters antsy as hell to reappear in print. Although, of course they don’t want me to write about them in the order I should. Nope they can’t possibly be that kind. Instead they want me to write about things that happen chapters and chapters away from where I am, but instead of ignoring them like I’ve been doing I’m just going to let it happen. I didn’t write the book in order the first time around and I had a far better success rate with writing consistently. Sure, there were spots that felt choppy when it was all said and done, but that can be fixed in editing. No more fighting it.
This little visit with these objects of inspiration got me thinking, A: I really need to keep these things more handy than I already have. I may even go as far as having Heath create a desktop with all of the pictures in some sort of collage just so it’s always in the background reminding me they are there when my mind loses track of them and B: What sort of inspiration makes other writers books possible? I know music is very common amongst us, but what other sorts of things help you get into that place, helps you feel your characters? I think it’d be interesting to see how it works for others. There might be something that one of us does that might be useful to another.
So writerly friends/readers – what are your objects of inspiration?
Peace – Sarah