Skip to main content
Publish date:

3 Exercises For Tapping Inspiration

Sometimes writers need a little inspirational nudge. Try these exercises to help get you started.
Author:

1. Let people be your prompts. The next time you and a friend or spouse are out dining or waiting to board a plane, work up an imaginary profile of two or three of the persons nearby (being careful, of course, not to stare), based on their clothing, mannerisms or bits of conversation you overhear. What are their livelihoods, favorite activities, fears, obsessions? Imagine them engaged in a crisis.

2. What inspires you to write? Keep a running list of anything that propels you to put words on paper—whether in the form of a letter, a journal entry, the opening lines of a poem or short story. From time to time, choose one of these jottings and build on it until you have a complete draft.

3. Play a favorite piece of music and write down anything that comes to mind. Don’t pause to find the right word or to make your sentences perfect; just let the music work its magic on your imagination.

Want more inspiration? Consider:
Pocket Muse II, Endless Inspiration

Also:
Become a Writer's Digest VIP:
Get a 1-year pass to WritersMarket.com, a 1-year subscription to Writer's Digest magazine and 10% off all WritersDigestShop.com orders!Click here to join.

Image placeholder title
Agent Alert: Hannah Andrade of Bradford Literary Agency

Agent Alert: Hannah Andrade of Bradford Literary Agency

Literary agent alerts (with this spotlight featuring Hannah Andrade of Bradford Literary Agency) are golden opportunities for new writers because each one is a literary agent who is likely building his or her client list.

3 Tips for Writing a Holiday Romance Novel

3 Tips for Writing a Holiday Romance Novel

Jenny Bayliss' new novel, A Season for Second Chances, takes place in a small seaside village with Christmas fast approaching. Here, she offers 3 tips for writing a holiday romance novel.

Sallie Tisdale: On the Power of Pop Culture

Sallie Tisdale: On the Power of Pop Culture

Author Sallie Tisdale discusses her deep dive into reality television to observe the power of pop culture for her new book, The Lie About the Truck.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 588

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a last poem.

The Differences in Writing a Memoir vs. a Novel

The Differences in Writing a Memoir vs. a Novel

Where fiction writing is about concealing emotional truth for interpretation, memoir is about exposing it for what it is. Writer Jenna Blum discusses the differences she experienced in writing a memoir vs. a novel.

17 Pros and Cons of Traditional Publishing vs. Self-Publishing

17 Pros and Cons of Traditional Publishing vs. Self-Publishing

When choosing your publishing journey, it's important to weigh the potential benefits and drawbacks in order to make the right decision for you and your work. Author Rick Lauber lays out 17 pros and cons of traditional publishing vs. self-publishing.

Spooky Season

Scary Season

Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, write something that has to do with the scary season!

Parker, 10:26

Christopher Parker: On Learning to Let Go in the Publishing Process

Author Christopher Parker discusses how he celebrated small victories in writing his debut novel, The Lighthouse.

NovemberDecember2021CoverReveal

Writer's Digest November/December 2021 Cover Reveal

Revealing the November/December 2021 issue of Writer's Digest: Magical Writing. Featuring advice from R.F. Kuang, Alix E. Harrow, Maggie Stiefvater, Tobias Buckell, Ran Walker, and many more.