Work 1st. Be Inspired Later

How are you doing today everyone?  Today I want to talk about something that every writer needs in spades:

Inspiration

So often you hear from people who have a great idea for a book/poem/screenplay/whatever, and you ask them if they’ve written it yet, and all you get is a blank look.

When asking if they wrote it, I usually get some vague comment about not having time, or too busy.  This I can shrug at, because what we have time for is all dependent on how highly we prioritize anything, not just writing.

What kills me is when they say something along the lines of, “I have the idea, but I don’t feel inspired enough to write it.”

The fact that you have an idea means you’re inspired enough to write it!

You wouldn’t believe how often I get this.  Before I go on as to why this is the absolute wrong mindset to take, take a look at the different things, from very successful authors, I’ve heard about writing and inspiration:

“There is nothing to writing.  All you do is sit at a typewriter and bleed.”  — Ernest Hemingway

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.”  — Stephen King

“Writing is easy.  All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.”  — Mark Twain

Do you see the common thread?

True, while Stephen King was the only one who directly referred to inspiration, I’m willing to bet you all can read through the lines and get this core meaining.

The work comes first, inspiration comes later!

You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve sat down writing a first draft, or doing rewrites for my publisher groaning with these kinds of thoughts running through my head:

I don’t want to do this!  I don’t even know what to write anymore!  I’m sick of thinking about this story!

But, I push through it and eventually I get to this point where a light goes off in my head and I think of a character and/or plot device that works perfectly in that situation where I felt things were getting stagnant, or I find the perfect solution to a trouble spot and the next thing I know, I’m writing up a storm oblivious to the outside world.

Don’t worry about inspiration, as I found that, at least in myself, waiting for inspiration is some kind of aversion to the idea of what you’re going to write is going to be bad.

Ignore it!  It’s just a smug little voice in your head that likes to tear you down.

So please, everyone.  If you have an idea, screw inspiration and get to writing it until you find that inspiration.  Once you do, the combination of that and the work you already put in will be an amazing thing to behold.

So what do you guys think?  Do you agree?  Disagree?  Think I’m insane?

If you do agree is there a potential masterpiece that you’ve been sleeping on?

Let me know in the comments below.

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