As a Writer, What Inspires You?


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How many of you can relate to the sentiment in this graphic? Do you wake up every morning excited about writing? Is writing a natural part of your life?

If so, what inspires you to embrace this obsession? The purpose of this post is to attempt to determine the things that drive us to write and to not give up. Many of us our independent authors (I prefer this term over self-published). We outsource our publishing to platforms like Amazon, CreateSpace and others. We use cover designers and editors just as a traditional publisher would or perform these services on our own.

Why do we do this without a guarantee that anyone will read our work? Here are some of my reasons.

GoalWriting has been a lifelong goal Since my childhood I have been enthralled with books. I read everything I could get my hands on and wrote stories from the time I first learned what reading was. By 2nd grade, thanks to some wonderful teaching and a lack of other children in my neighborhood, I was reading at a 12th grade level. I couldn’t imagine not having reading as part of my daily activity.

importanceThe importance of writing – I realized in school and then, in my professional life, that writing well would be an asset in my ability to advance. My writing ability has earned me distinction in my profession. I was often recognized as the person that should be involved in editing corporate documents and proofreading anything published within the companies for which I worked. I was not an English major, but writing always came naturally to me. I remember the first paper that I turned in for a college course. The professor was handing back the graded papers and asked which student was ‘Don Massenzio’. I reluctantly raised my hand and he informed the class that he was giving each of them a copy of my paper. He let them know that my paper should be looked at as the standard for what he would require from them. While I was pleased that my paper received recognition, it proved to be a double-edged sword as many students requested my help with their papers and others resented the recognition I received.

voices

The voices in my head – My whole life, I have been asking myself ‘what if’ questions. I would see a situation and think, “What if X happened? This would make a great book or movie.” I’ve always thought this way, but never did anything about it. I have a dog-eared notebook that I’ve been scribbling in for 20 years with ideas for stories. Finally being able to document these and publish the stories has been a wonderful release for me. My only issue is that I can’t write fast enough to turn every idea into something.

publishers

Convenient publishing opportunities – As an indie author, there are so many do-it-yourself options or ways to outsource things that need to be done. While mustering the courage to publish my first book, Frankly Speaking, I pursued the traditional publishing route. I also sought critiques from writing groups and did all of the things authors are supposed to do. I then let one of my toughest critics, my wife, read the first draft and she told me it was definitely worth publishing. The Amazon platform gave me a vehicle to cut out the middle man and take the work directly to the readers. Thus far, the results have been favorable. I often wonder what I would do if a traditional publishing opportunity came a long and, honestly, I would likely pursue it just to give my writing another outlet to reach more readers.

inspiration

Inspiration for my children – About a year ago, my then eight-year-old daughter told me that she wanted to write a book like her dad. I couldn’t have been more pleased. I helped her turn her story idea into a children’s book and her eyes light up when people buy her book and ask her to sign it. She is now inspired to write more books just for the thrill of holding something she created in her hands. This makes it all worth it for me.

So, how about you? What drives you to sit at your computer every day and write without knowing if your work will ever be read? What compels you to commit large chunks of your time to this endeavor? I’m very interested in your thoughts on this.

I’ll close with a chart taken from this article from a poll taken from the Author’s Promoter web site on what motivates the writers that frequent this site to write.

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42 thoughts on “As a Writer, What Inspires You?

  1. I love this post. Great to see what inspires you!
    I’m the same, have loved books since I was very young and written stories since around the same time. I’ve simply never considered not writing!
    I get inspiration now from having something meaningful to say. My WIP, while very much a fictional murder mystery, explores many deeper issues that I think need to be discussed, and I feel passionate when I write about it 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

      • Ahh, that’s fair enough I suppose. I am both unlucky and lucky. By that I mean, I have always wanted a career and to be a career driven person, but after 9 years of trying to work out what to do, still haven’t. I have a good marketing job, but I don’t really enjoy it – the lucky side is it allows me to try and focus on my writing on the side, instead.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This goes right to the heart and soul of what writing should be Don.
    As I began to see completion to my ‘Of Patchwork Warriors’ fantasy, the heady rush every day to have the entire work ready for publications, including my own cover was quite heady. When I finally went onto Kindle it was a feeling of triumph and completion…..and onto the next project.
    This has to be re-blogged.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It is the most powerful and empowering thing to be able to say something with feeling, emotion and clarity without the pre judgement of others. You dont have to be of a certain set, of a certain race, dress a particular way or have the things that many people measure you by. You are accepted by the words you write. Asking me why I write is like asking a runner why they run or an artist why they draw. I get lost in the words, become somehow free. I write because I am me, its what is meant to be.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m mostly get inspired by nature. Other times people and social problems inspire me to the extent that I have this urge to write down what’s in my mind without even giving the slightest thought that what would be people’s reaction.
    When there comes a stage where the fear of appreciation or criticisms is gone is the point where you can really start writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Some apostrophes and typo’s have begun a rebellion this morning and obviously deseted before I pressed post. Many apologies they will stand before a Court Marshall once recaptured! *sigh* the things a writer has to endure …

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Definitely living the graphic. In college, I’d actually get twitchy and irritable if I went for 3 days without doing any creative writing. Ended up using outlines and character bios to take the edge off, which helped in the long run. Not sure what to say about the inspiration though. My stories are all action adventures, so most the sparks are set off by random dreaming, movies, TV, and various books that are usual of the comic/manga variety. There are a few that have been ignited by news articles. You just never know what will happen, so best to leave yourself open to the muse at all times.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank for this insightful post Don. I can relate to what you say and wish your daughter every success with her latest book and her future projects. I am inspired by many things. A conversation overheard, a walk in the forest amongst fallen leaves. All inspire me to compose poetry. As an earlier person commented, I also become itch if I don’t write for several days. Kevin

    Like

  8. Glad to have found this post. My husband is the one that introduced me to writing and since then I have not stopped writing. I write to deal with homesickness from the country I left when I was younger. Great post by the way ☺

    Liked by 1 person

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