What inspires me to write?
This is, I know, the burning question on everyone’s mind, so I’m finally bringing you the answer: reading. It’s as simple as that. When I’m reading a book I truly enjoy and connect with, my entire body hums with the desire to write. Honestly. I can’t wait to sit down in front of the computer and create a totally awesome piece of fiction (or at least the beginning of what will – surely? – become totally awesome).
Don’t misunderstand, I don’t read a book then write about the same topic. It’s really the writing that inspires me more than the specific story I’m reading. Does that make sense? When I read a book where I feel the writing is smart, witty, tight (not a lot of blah blah blah descriptions of scene or emotions), relatable and entertaining, I go nuts. Not every book fulfills those points for me, unfortunately, so when I find those that do, I can’t wait to sit down and attempt to do the same thing (again, not a duplicate of the story, but of the art of the writing).
An example of SOME of the books that have inspired me to keep writing:
- The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
- London Fallingby Emma Carr
- Blackberry Winterby Sarah Jio
- Bridge of Scarlet Leaves by Kristina McMorris.
Of course there are many more, and there are also those that inspired me in general (not just my writing) such as Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, The Josephine B. Trilogy by Sandra Gulland as well as all three books in The Century Trilogy by Ken Follett. Again, only a few listed here, but there are more.
Ironically, growing up, I wasn’t much of a reader. I wasn’t one of those girls who disappeared into the world of a book for any length of time. I read for school (required reading only) and that was about the extent of it. Not until my mid-thirties did I really develop into a true reader, a lover of books. Now, I’m not happy unless I have at least one book to read. And sometimes I’ll alternate between reading two books at the same time. That is to say I have them both in my house for reading at the same time and alternate between them at different times of the day, not actually reading them literally at the same time. Just so we’re clear.
So reading is as much of a gift to me as my (presumed) talent in writing. I “need” both of them in my life for the sake of happiness. I feel out of sorts when I don’t have a book at home to read and I’m even deeper out of sorts when I go too long without writing.
It’s good to know and follow our passions (unless that passion is very naughty… You fill in the rest). So I encourage all of you to do just that. Find what makes you feel fulfilled and inspires you to want more, then make it happen. And I’m not talking chocolate, though it does both those things for many of us, am I right?