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  • Eileen Dunst

What Inspires You?

Where do you find your inspiration? Is it watching your favorite show? Is it reading a book? Playing video games? What makes your brain come up with the next step or solve a problem? My inspiration has a catch twenty-two. It inspires me and distracts me all at the same time.

My inspiration is more a place than a thing and it can be found everywhere. My favorite spots to sit are outside. In the rain or under a covered deck or when the sun is shining. It’s the beauty of nature that gets and keeps my creativity flowing. The sound of a bird’s song may inspire a poem. A splash of wave in a lake may bring out a song. Leaves blowing in the wind may help me write the next chapter in a book. The rain may give me an idea of a picture to draw.

The downside of nature is that it also distracts me. I get caught up with watching the animals play around. My attention may be diverted to the falling rain. Sometimes the pitter patters take my focus away and makes me sleepy. I must remind myself why I sat out there in the first place. Other times I just find comfort with being outside. I can relax my mind and clear my head. I just want to watch what nature has to offer.

Everyone has their own place to go that inspires them or helps them think. Everyone is in such a rush to complete the tasks. But that is not smart. The first idea is not always the right one. For the best story, strategy, or whatever it is, it may take multiple rewrites to get it done right.

This is the hardest and most boring part to me. When I write my stories, I visualize them as an Asian drama playing in my head. I have had someone tell me that I don’t put enough details in my books. I do that purposely. I personally think creativity is dying in the world today. So, I write my stories with only the details I want the reader definitely to see. The rest of the details are up to the reader to come up with. The characters’ hair, clothes, shapes, and most of the buildings are up to the readers. I want to wake up the creativity in everyone’s head. After I get the story updated and edited, I take a couple of days away from it. When I can’t remember it word for word, I go back and read the story. Does it still catch my attention? Does it still flow well? Does it make sense? These are questions I have to ask myself.

I always have to return to the place that inspires me. Sometimes, I can’t be outside. Those times I leave the blinds wide open so I can see outside. Rain or shine (I live in Florida so no snow), it brings me comfort and tranquility along with new ideas. But completing a book gives me even a better feeling. It’s the feeling of completion. When you see the finished cover, you get excited. When you put it out into the world, you get nervous and scared. When you see someone has bought a copy, you feel relief. When you see a copy of the finished book, you are overwhelmed with joy. But when someone hands you a copy of your book and asks you for an autograph, you are over the top. Nothing can bring you down.

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