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It’s like I always forget. Life gets crazy during the holidays. I find myself pulled away from writing. And I go with it. But then when it’s time to restart, it’s hard.
Then I finally do it. I write something. It’s probably something short. But I keep at it and finally I dive back into my current novel. It flows better than I expect. I go to sleep thinking about the characters and the plot line. I wake up with ideas. In the shower I have more ideas and I can’t wait to get to actually writing. Sometimes the characters take over and do things I didn’t expect.
Writers write. We might write drivel. We definitely will be rewriting and revising. But getting the words down has to be done. And personally the more words I write, the more I want to write. Getting to it brings me joy of sharing thoughts, even if no one else will read the draft (or even this post).
It reminds me of this quote by Doris Lessing: “You only learn to be a better writer by actually writing.” It’s like most anything—the more you practice the better you get. It doesn’t mean it will be easy or flawless, but improvement comes. Sometimes for me it’s been that “ah ha” moment when a concept finally sunk into my brain. Often, it’s less obvious. It’s only when I look back at some old writing that I see all the things I’ve learned since then.
Life is always throwing us off. For me these past few months I’ve had a lot of illness. Sometimes I’ve been too brain dead to write. Other times I’ve been too exhausted. But because I AM a writer, I want to write, and I do so when I can. And again writing makes me want to write more. Writing on one topic or one story helps my brain come up with other ideas for more posts or stories.
Another way words beget words is by being involved with other writers. My critique group will point out where I missed emotion in a scene. Or they’ll ask questions, and those questions will stir thoughts in my brain about my story and I can’t wait to get back to writing the story. Sometimes my reaction to those questions or problem areas happens right away; other times it’s like they have to simmer. I’ll be doing something totally unrelated to writing and an idea pops into my head about the words my critique partner said. Now I know how to fix that! Yee Haw!
Another way I’m inspired is by teaching. When I see students and/or other writers making mistakes, I want to help them and others learn. Or sometimes I want to express my frustrations with those who don’t try very hard. Many of my blog posts get inspired one of these ways. (Especially on my other website: www.susanuhlig.com where I talk about writing for children.)
So life interrupts us all. What is it that inspires you to get back to writing?
SM Ford writes inspirational fiction for adults, although teens may find the stories of interest, too. She also loves assisting other writers on their journeys.