How Many Prompts Will You Experience Today?
“Have you ever pondered the miracle of popcorn? It starts out as a tiny, little, compact kernel with magic trapped inside that when agitated, bursts to create something marvelously desirable. It’s sort of like those tiny, little thoughts trapped inside an author’s head that―in an excited explosion of words―suddenly become a captivating fairytale!” ― Richelle E. Goodrich
What Inspires You to Write?
Just as we want to know why someone becomes what they do, I’m curious why you want to write. I’d like to see your responses in the comments section. I don’t completely understand all of the motivations and processes for writing and believe that I’ll learn when you describe your motivations for me. I think there are a million reasons, but only a few will be authentic for each of us.
Whether it’s an “isolation and inspiration from the internal muse”, or the “immerse yourself in life and then recreate it on paper” approach, all writers have these little kernels clamoring to burst forth.
Writing in Self-Defense
When I was writing my recovery curriculum, TIERS, I wrote out of self-defense. Now there’s a motivation you don’t hear much about, but I wrote Personal Discovery Guides because I got tired of saying the same thing and then having people tell me I hadn’t told them something.
Writing these Personal Discovery Guides was a catharsis; a way to express to others how I had faced and overcome some of the issues in my addiction and life. After writing, I’d give it to a woman at the recovery house, dated and signed. Plus, I didn’t have to rely on my memory of the time I told someone. Point made.
Emotions Prompt the Words
I also wrote out of anger. Again, unless we’re talking about politics, social causes, injustices and the like, most authors and writers don’t sit down at the computer with a scowl on their faces and hammer out 1500 words.
Or then again, that may just be my assumption or the embarrassment that I used anger to prompt a piece. If you write when you’re angry, let me know, so I don’t feel so alone. I should qualify that; underneath the anger was a profound sadness that many women continued to relapse or get involved with yet another abusive partner. Unfortunately, anger is the hot and heavier emotion and we don’t always look beneath it to find the sadness and fear. But as a writer, exploring all of your emotions, along with the five senses is what makes your reading resonate with readers.
Seeing and Hearing: Two Qualities of a Great Writer
Then there are the “snatches of conversation that must be recorded for posterity” approach. I’m an inveterate observer and listener. I can participate in conversations and take part in the activities, but I often find myself simply watching and hearing snatches of life.
Our friends and co-workers morph into characters or examples. That one-liner delivered for an immediate laugh prompts me to consider, “but what if.” I’ll often do that with passages from a book; mentally taking the plot and twisting it. Usually, that doesn’t get me too far, as I’m more interested in how the author of the book moved the plot line along, but it’s a good writing exercise for writers.
The Unseen and Unheard of Stories
Write about the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
The Master Gardeners gave the women of the house a purpose as well. They could nurture the peppers, tomatoes, and squash, and then see their efforts at the dining-room table.
It’s not just the noble acts, there’s a dark undercurrent running through some actions. I know first-hand, from my years in a drug world. Remove the veneer of many, and you find the self-serving, self-centered aspects of people. It’s these qualities that make great villains.
- Will she do the right thing?
- Are the temptations too great?
- Will she learn the lesson and move forward?
With enough intrigue and conflict, you can keep your reader turning pages until the end.
The Niggly, Itchy, Got to Scratch it Prompts
We’re storytellers, in the final analysis. Some are lies; some are universal truths, some are fantasy, some are how it should be, and others are well, just entertaining. I’ll repeat it here; carry that notebook, review your darlings, and put together the best writing you can do today.
Inspiring Each Other
Inspiration is what we can give to another writer; giving them encouragement to tell their story, write the movie or record the events of the day from their perspective. And each of us needs encouragement to keep up the process of putting words and stories together.
Two Drops of Ink is looking for poems, writing tips, short stories, and books reviews. Have a few kernels bursting? Then take a look at our Submission Guidelines and see about joining us.