Thursday, January 12, 2017

BIG  MAGIC    aka    Inspiration @kathleenlawless

Most non-writers truly believe that writers sit down and write when the mood or the inspiration strikes.  Impossible to explain how it's actually sit down and write ever day, even when the well is dry or I just plain old don't feel like it.

Don't get me wrong.  Sometimes inspiration strikes, my fingers itch for the keyboard and off I go, swept up in the magic.  The preceding happens less often than I would like, but it can and does happen from time to time.

I'm about halfway through Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert.  In the book Gilbert expands on a theory that really struck a chord with me.  She suggests how a myriad of inspiring ideas are floating through the Universe seeking a creative body to bring them to life.  When the right creative body latches onto the idea, the creator than partners with inspiration.  The two make a pact to work together.  This hold true, not just for books, but for anything creative including music, movies, painting and inventions, to name just a few.

However, should the creator renege and fail to bring the idea to fruition, eventually inspiration will simply float away, off to form a new partnership with a different creative body.

I love this theory!  Not only does it explain why other authors tackle a subject I once considered or played with till it fizzled, I no longer have to feel guilty about those books I started but never finished, or those characters who were conceived but never given birth to.  And yes, inspiration can be fickle.  Sometimes more than one person has partnered with inspiration and it becomes a race to see who brings it forth first.  Or best.  Think Beta and VHS.  Apple and Blackberry.  Facebook and MySpace.  Similar inspiration, different results.

For me, it is so great not to feel bad about those pages of scribbles and research that are collecting dust.  I know that inspiration found a better partner for that project.  Or perhaps will come back to me when the timing is optimal.  And for all those books I have finished and published, I know I was the right recipient for that inspiration at that particular time.

I can't wait to see what inspiration comes knocking next and what kind of partnership we form.  Inspiration is everywhere and it never totally abandons us, even when it might feel that way.  As Gilbert writes, it truly is Big Magic.  

Where do you find your inspiration?


  1. I love Elizabeth Gilbert and I didn't know about this book. Off to get it! I actually posted one of her Ted Talks on my blog the other day -- where she talks about this same inspiration. She makes so much sense!

  2. Thanks, Maddie. It is a great read that really rings true.

  3. Very interesting. Thanks for sharing. Love the book cover. And I love your analogies (ie., Facebook vs. My Space).

  4. I really loved this, Kathleen. I liked the analogies, too.

  5. Thanks for the food for thought, Kathleen. Interesting post.


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