Finding Inspiration

Current theme song: “Here it Goes Again” by OK Go

Current stage in process: line edits of Book #2 of YA Urban Fantasy series; detailing outline for Book #3

The revisions for my current work in progress are complete! Woo-hoo! I have officially moved onto the line edits. I’ve got a thick stack of paper on my desk now because it’s always easier to handle edits when I’ve got a hard copy in hand. My brain treats it differently than when it’s on the screen. Don’t ask me why, because I have no idea. It just does.

While edits are underway, I’m also simultaneously working on my outline for Book #3, which leads me into this post’s topic: finding inspiration! A lot of authors get asked “where do you get your ideas from?” Well, to be frank, everywhere. Inspiration is everywhere you look, you just have to pay attention. As my good friend Sherlock would say:

sherlock-observe

For instance, who knew that a random conversation with your family about the consistency of caramel could trigger an ‘ah-ha!’ moment, creating the basis for a character’s personality? Then lead to multiple new scenes and plot developments? True story. (I’d like to give a shout out to my brother-in-law for the in depth discussion about cooking caramel.)

Watch people (and try not to be too creepy). Pick up on the little things they do, catch snippets of conversation, observe how people interact with each other, how they talk to their children or people they don’t like, how they laugh, what’s in their grocery cart. What seems like insignificant details can spark creativity. Sometimes it’s easy to let the world pass you by. Stop and soak it in.

Art and photography are also big inspirations for me personally. When I browse through Pinterest or Deviantart, amazing pieces of art can set a scene in my head, lead to a character’s creation, or inspire a plot. In this vein, I have created a board on my Pinterest account for DARKEST LIGHT with images that correlate with the book. Take a look >>here<<! I’ve gotten into the habit of adding images to boards I’ve created for each of my books and I will open them up when said books come out.

And last but not least, one of my biggest sources of inspiration is music. Who hasn’t been inspired by music at one point or another (or over and over again)? In fact, before I even write a book I put together a playlist that guides the story. I’m constantly shifting around and adding songs as I develop new ideas. I’ll keep doing that until the book is complete. Other authors have done the same. I would recommend taking a look at the playlists Sarah J. Maas has shared. To give you insight into what songs have propelled my stories, I have uploaded my playlist for DARKEST LIGHT onto Spotify! You can listen to the playlist >>here<<. I would note that the playlist on Spotify is not all-inclusive because some of the songs on my list are not available on Spotify. As with my Pinterest boards, I will release playlists in time with book releases.

So, go out into the world! See what you can see. Be inspired. Then come back on the last Friday of this month because I’ll be reviewing Calamity by Brandon Sanderson. I’M SUPER PUMPED, GUYS.