“It is not what you look at that matters, it is what you see.”
- Henry David Thoreau
I often find it easier to begin stories than to work them out full length. That's because while I'm struggling to make the plot work, I get a new and even more attractive idea and off I go exploring that.
What inspires me to write? Well, practically everything. It can be a movie I’ve seen, a book I've been reading in which a particular scene doesn't work for me and there I go thinking if the heroine would just start laughing or pour cold water on the hero right then, it would make this scene so much more interesting. Then I would mentally knit a whole situation over it.
It could be a random conversation heard in a crowded place. For example, Sunday while out shopping I heard a father chastising a boy that the shine had gone out of his hair because he wasn't taking care of it. It struck me as odd and I began to weave out a character whose father was nitpicking or overly careful maybe even over protective? Get the idea?
One of the most stimulating sources of inspiration I can think of, is the lyrics from a song. I'm sure I’m getting many head-nods at that. Even the music itself can lead you to a particular mood and make you dream up the next twist in your fiction.
Or even just looking around and observing can inspire one. I find I could be taking a walk with hubby and see a mulberry tree and my mind would tune out my surroundings to picture the heroine in current WIP on a farm with the hero and he's telling her about all things grown there but with an undercurrent of tension running there. Then I ask myself, why are they there? Caught by what kind of situation?
I used Hrithik Roshan for hero inspiration for Zaheer Saxena. I'm sure I'm not the only one of aspiring romance/romance authors to do so
But in daily humdrum of life, there's little time left to use your imagination. One can hardly feel inspired battling with kids who refuse to eat dal (lentils) or hubby getting grumpy looking for his misplaced PAN card. Or when you're running late for work, probably dropping something in the process. Can you?
Inspiration needs time to simmer and grow into creativity.
So if you're looking for inspiration for your story, I have these pointers:
- Think out of the box. Writers already have twisted minds - lol - so this shouldn't be a problem. As my dear author friend Raven McAllan says, "one man's freedom fighter is another one's terrorist." Agree so much with that. Though here, I'm not using the quote in the spirit she means. I say, anyone's bus driver can be another's hero material. If he pulls the vehicle out of a tricky traffic situation and saves people? Why not? Or the girl who keeps your bags at the Mall, doing her job with quiet efficiency and dealing patiently with some annoying customers? Would you base your heroine on her? Again, why not? Take a situation and put your own twist on it. Voilà! You may have a winner.
- Take time to smell the flowers. Allow yourself some seclusion period in a day because imagination needs time and space. Best thing I find for this is a morning walk. The muscles move but the mind is absolutely free to ramble all on its own.
- Don't cap your imagination. Never dismiss any idea as ludicrous. Anything that comes to you, note it down. You never know where it may lead you. Type or keep notes in a diary. Jot down anything that comes to mind. When you're free, go over these and you'll be surprised at the scenes that spring up in front of you.
So, think different, enjoy your leisure and keep notes of your ideas. Keep being inspired. It leads to higher energy levels in your day.
Write with confidence.