Wednesday, 19 March 2014
Balanced Challenge: Day 9: How to Find Inspiration
Chapter 9 of Balanced started out with a quote that definitely spoke right to my heart:
"Most of all we just need permission. Permission to slow down. Permission to discover our deepest purpose. And permission to follow God-breathed dreams even when we still have kids at home."
I think a lot of work-at-home parents must be struck with conflicting feelings over whether to follow their dreams (even just for fifteen minutes) rather than tending to household chores or devoting themselves wholeheartedly to their kids. Does it make me a terrible wife or mother if I choose to write for an hour rather than tackling the ironing pile?
I imagine that this conflict will get stronger when we have a little one in the house. In fact, having seen how friends with babies and small children are getting on with their lives, it seems like life is more challenging with a child who is toddling around, attempting to walk, and climbing or reaching into awkward places every time your back is turned. At least a newborn sleeps a lot and can't go very far, right? ;)
In the midst of housework and raising children, it can be hard to find inspiration. Tricia shares the ways in which she opens herself up to receiving inspiration on a daily basis on her blog today. It made me think about how ideas come to me, and I'm not sure if I'm quite so intentional about making myself ready to find inspiration. Maybe it's because I'm not battling several small children to get to my desk and write, but at the moment, I tend to have ideas come to me quite easily.
In particular, over the last couple of months, I've often woken up with ideas in my head--not just snippets, but often rough storylines and distinct characters. I haven't had this happen quite so much recently, but it was a great encouragement to me in the days when I was battling morning sickness and barely felt up to washing the dishes, let alone sitting down to write. When I did feel up to being creative, but only had a few minutes at my disposal, I would type up these ideas that had come to me in the waking hours. I'm not sure where I'm going to go with these ideas (currently sitting in a OneNote notebook provisionally and horribly titled: The Princess and the Security Guard, Professing Love, Rockstar Roommate & The Other Boy Next Door) but they're there when I'm ready for them. Sometimes I do end coming back to ideas years after I first scribble them down. Just the other day I found my original, paper notes for the novel I'm currently editing. Although it's changed a lot since I first came up with the idea in 2009, the original setting and some of the characters are still the same.
Two nuggets of wisdom particularly stuck out to me from today's challenge. First: dedicate your writing to the the Lord each day in prayer. Second: Write something, every day. Even if it's a scribbled idea on a post-it or a single paragraph of your current work-in-progress, just write something.
This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!