Inspiration Is Never In Short Supply
There was a point a few months ago when I thought I would have nothing left to write about. I had a few more ideas lined up, but beyond that, I was struggling to come up with any more.
I remember thinking to myself, “What am I going to do in a few weeks when I’ve run out of ideas?”
My mind was drawing blanks and no matter where I went, or where I looked, I struggled to come up with any new ideas for my blog posts.
It was a few weeks after this, that the ideas started to flow again.
I’m not sure what started it. Maybe, it was the trips that I went on. Taking myself out of my usual settings may have helped my creative juices to flow.
I don’t know.
What I do know is that I started to see inspiration all around me.
Seemingly trivial events became ideas that I could write about. My mind had opened up and I was more receptive to interpreting what I was seeing and writing about it.
It’s easy to think you have nothing left to write. It’s a common concern for writers.
But the truth is, inspiration is everywhere. We just need to look for it.
I have been writing consistently on Medium since December 2017. I have been surprised by the number of topics and articles I have been able to write.
I thought I would run out of ideas quickly, but the opposite seems to be true. The more I write, the more ideas I come up with. Apart from the week where I struggled for ideas, they have flowed with regularity.
In some ways, this is surprising and not so surprising.
It’s surprising in the sense that with the internet, virtually every topic you can imagine has been covered. You could type random topics into Google and find thousands of articles on that single topic.
The internet is noisy, and it’s hard to stand out.
It’s hard to find the motivation to write when it’s likely the topic you want to write about has been covered, and, possibly, dealt with better than you could.
However, this is where it becomes not so surprising.
These topics may have been covered before, but they have not been covered from your perspective. Everyone has a different perspective on matters. Yours is no less, or no more, valid than anyone else’s.
Your point may connect with someone else, it may not. But, your point has a right to be heard. This is why you have to keep soldiering on when you struggle to find inspiration.
There is always something to write about.
No matter how many time it has been covered before, it hasn’t been covered from your unique perspective. As a writer, it’s your job to look at things and attempt to understand and explain them.
No matter where you look, these things, events or incidents are all around us. We just need to learn to look closer!
“If you wait for inspiration to write, you’re not a writer, you’re a waiter.” — Dan Poynter
The above quote is poignant. It sums up the struggle a lot of us feel when it comes to writing. It’s hard to constantly come up with ideas. It’s easy to think that waiting will allow the ideas to come to you.
Sometimes, this works. But most of the time it fails. You have to go out and find inspiration for yourself.
I spent a recent Saturday walking around the centre of my city, Chester. I needed to get a few things, and I thought walking into the city and wandering around a bit would do me good.
As I was walking around, a strange thing started to happen. I began to feel inspired.
Whether it was admiring the Roman ruins that dot the city, or whether it was observing people and their actions, I felt more inspired than I have in a long while.
A simple act had inspired me to write posts about various topics.
This is what Poynter is saying above. We all struggle to find inspiration at times, there are no exceptions. Even the best writers have confronted this problem.
Waiting is no solution, however. You need to get out and about, walk around, stop by a river, people watch for a while. You need to take yourself out of your comfort zone and interact with the world.
You can’t find inspiration at your keyboard, you need to look outside for it.
Once you get out and about, after a while, you’ll find inspiration all around you.
You just need to look a little closer.