And what does this inspiration look like?In his book, Plot and Structure, James Scott Bell gives some useful tips on getting motivated:
· Write a statement of purpose and put it in a place that you can see daily. But it must be one that excites you!
· Have the word “Writer” printed across your coffee mug. Every time you take a sip you’ll be reminded of your commitment to write. This will not only give you a caffeine boost, but a fresh jolt of enthusiasm too!
· Browse the bestseller section in bookstores – look at the authors’ pics and bios, read their openings, and imagine what your face would look like on the back of that book. Think to yourself, I can do this! And then, the most important piece of advice, rush back to your office and start writing.
The next tip was the one I liked – probably because I had already been doing this long before I read this great writer’s advice. And I felt a whole lot less silly because of my approach to getting myself inspired.· Find your own item of visual motivation – inspirational words taped to your computer, a photograph of an admired writer, or your own rendering of your first novel’s cover (you could even put your own critical praise on the back … and if you’re going to do that, be lavish in that praise!)
You see, after getting an idea for a book, the first thing I tend to do is come up with a working title. The next thing I always do, and this has been the greatest source of inspiration to me, is design a book cover. Yes, I know that cover will probably never see the light of day, but it is the one thing that has spurred me on to continue writing, time and time again.Here are the covers my finished (unpublished) novels, and others that are still under construction (yes, I do tend to multitask!)
Prodigal: My first novel – complete, but have some reworking to do.
Scarlett: The sequel to Prodigal – about 70% complete.
The Red Floor: My first NaNoWriMo win in 2009. Based on the story of my mother’s life. About 90% complete.
Diplomatic Immunity: A great story line, but a difficult project. Only just started on this project that a friend and I were going to do together. This story is based on her life as a diplomat’s wife but due to the sensitivity of this project, we’re unsure how to proceed – fiction or non-fiction?
Hungry: My second NaNoWriMo win in 2010 and my first attempt at a historical novel – about 70% complete.
Pebbles in my Pocket: My first non-fiction project I will be attempting in November with WNFIN (which stands for Write Non-Fiction In November) – and hence, sadly, I will not be taking part in NaNoWriMo this year. Such a pity, but I can’t do them both, and this project is far more important to me.
Looking at all these covers, I feel inspired all over again. I think I might just put them all up at the same time in my writing attic … maybe that will inspire me to finish these works in progress.
Please take time to share with the group, not in a comment below, but in a separate blog, your writing inspiration/s.