I’m frequently asked, “Where do you get all your ideas?”
I imagine some may think it’s simply a matter of waiting for them to fall into my lap. And, admittedly, on a good day, they do. But more often than not, they don’t and any amount time spent waiting for this to happen is usually wasted.
Instead, I’ve become much more methodical and proactive about creating a fertile and rich environment from which ideas and inspiration can grow. In short, I cheat, and here’s exactly how:
I beg. I beg people share their own experiences and thoughts with me. This gives my own thoughts more to mull over and play with. It gives me insight into the inner workings of someone else. It allows me to put myself in their own shoes for a moment and experience something new and different.
I borrow. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right? Actually, I borrow ideas, but then transform them into my own. I enjoy taking something that’s familiar to a potential reader and then expanding upon it in a new way. In this sense, as a writer, I’m never truly starting from scratch and there’s never that proverbial blank page staring back at me. This truth alone is very liberating.
I steal. I have two young boys, and my youngest son came to me through adoption. He struggles with a massive amount of special needs and I’m constantly gleaning inspiration and ideas from his experiences, struggles and responses to the world around him. All kids are a veritable gold mine of untapped inspiration for all writers. “Out of the mouth of babes” might as well have been a phrase coined by a writer because it’s the truth! Little is more entertaining than what comes out of a child’s mouth!
I’d love to know what inspires YOU to write. Please share-don’t be shy!
Shannon Medisky is a leading expert in how to fail, how to be wrong the right way and how to capitalize on all windows of opportunity. A former educator, she has worked with children ranging in age from preschool through the 8th grade and is mom to two young boys, including one with a multitude of special needs. To learn more about Shannon, her mission to help kids fail and how doing so can help all kids thrive, please visit ShannonMedisky.com. Facebook: LinkedIN, Twitter, and Pinterest
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