TFW you're subscribed to like 1,000 stories on AO3 and none of them ever seem to update. :( Sigh. I guess I could go back to continuing my WIPs, but reading seems easier right now because I'm not exactly sure what to do next in the stories. Maybe just sitting in front of the blank screen and seeing what comes will help. Where have you been pulling inspiration from lately, Rosy? #FandomProblems
I have a similar problem. My fics are languishing and my original… well no, I started a new novel because I wanted to tell the story. So I did start.
Where do I get my inspiration from? I have to figure that out because my inspiration isn’t flowing for me lately.
I will say that when you want to write, inspiration isn’t always the most important thing. One of the things I’ve noticed in my long (LONG) time writing, is that if you show up to the page, consistently, even without inspiration, the words DO come.
Building a habit, a writing routine, gets your being primed to be creative. If you sit down at a regular time and start writing, your brain gets ready before you even start. You can also add in some other sensory inputs to inform your brain that it’s writing time. A cup of coffee, a certain music, a scent like incense or room spray. Sitting down in your chair. A few times, I even tried wearing a hat. It almost felt like it was keeping my thoughts in.
Another thing to do is to go back over your old works. Those languishing WIPs you have? Pick one. Read it. Start living in that world. When you get to the end of it. Continue it. Sometimes in order to finish an old work, I just have to remember what it was to me.
If you have an idea for something new percolating just under the skin and you want to write it but you don’t know what it is or how to start it? Nows the time to mess around with the ideas. Take out a notebook… paper and pen even, and start writing about the character. What does she want? What’s blocking that? If she gets what she wants is it good or bad? Where does she come from? What is her history? Take notes. Start a pinterest board. Make a family tree. Research her specific interest. Think about her life, the characters she will meet in your story. Get invested in the character. Let that character guide your inspiration.
Another thing, sometimes I do, when I want to write but my idea just isn’t inspiring me? I figure my idea is missing something. So I dig around in my brain and find another, unrelated idea, and smash it together with the old idea. This creates a frisson, a tension, where excitement generates. There are questions. The unexpected happens. This is why fanfiction works. You take your fandom characters and go BUT WAIT! Let’s put them into a…. SUBMARINE! with an ALIEN APOCALYPSE!!! …. and a TRAITOR IN THEIR MIDST!!!! or I don’t know. What ever floats your boat. Or U boat as the case may be. ;)
I mean, that’s the purpose of prompts, isn’t it? And i will admit that sometimes when I get fic prompts, they aren’t enough to generate excitement for me and I have to stuff two or three prompts into a story. I used to have a HUGE problem coming up with stories, but when I discovered this trick of incorporating multiple disparate ideas into one story, then it became easier for me to find ideas.
Lack of inspiration can have many reasons, though, so it’s hard to come up with a prescription for WHY it’s not working. You have to figure out what it is. Maybe your brain has just fallen out of the habit of writing. So you have to build the habit up. Maybe you’re exhausted. Rest.
Maybe you’re anxious and insecure about your ability… learn how to turn off your internal editor and JUST write. My suggestion is actually to force yourself to write, no matter what, for fifteen minutes. Set a timer. Just keep writing until it dings. No matter the doubts or confusion. And if it works? You are writing. If it doesn’t, you just wasted 15 minutes and lets be honest… you were gonna do that anyway on twitter, weren’t you?
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Wonderer, wanderer, warrior. Been around for a while. Got some stuff going on. Should probably get back to blogging. I mean....I didn't go away, I was just talking about science fiction for a while.