After the Glitter, Get Inspired

When the glitter settles, I often discover that my creativity has gravitated from the work place to family, friends, and holiday festivities. In other words, it goes into play mode. Christmas can leave me feeling unmotivated to return to the hard task of writing. When this happens, a pep talk is in order to remind the creative side of my brain that it loves writing.  I find it helpful to think about a time when I was able to produce and convince myself that I’m capable of doing so again. I try to focus on the positive and not entertain negative thoughts or lingering distractions so that I can prepare the way for my inner writer to quicken.

I know that I must allow the left side of my brain (the logical or analytical side) to provide a safe uncluttered place for my creative right side to emerge.

In other words, I clean up the glitter. For me, it’s getting my hair done, putting away the Christmas decorations, and cleaning off my desk and workspace. I organize my desk and schedule and make necessary adjustments to reincorporate my writing time. I order a calendar for the upcoming year. I often need to re-prioritize my writing goals and ask, “What is my next step? What day and time will I begin?” I allow my left side to formulate a plan for my inner writer, rather like one friend spurring another to do something great.

With the glitter removed, I coax my right side to get back to my fiction writing.

 I stoke the dim flickering desire by intentionally doing things that heat up the inspiration. I may read a book on writing, go to a writing blog, or connect with another writer. I dig out the inspirational quotes. If I’m lazy, I may read a novel or two. I think about my readers.

When my motivation intensifies, I know it’s time to get started.

Even if it doesn’t, when the designated appointment time arrives, I sit at my desk. It feels familiar like I’m coming home again. I begin by reading what I last wrote or looking over my plot outline.  When my creative mind knows I mean business, it will emerge–sometimes slow and sulky and other times eager and crashing through the gates. My lips quirk into a smile and my fingers glide over the keyboard. It may feel rusty, but I know this isn’t the time for me to worry about perfection, but just be thankful that I’m writing again.

How do you go from glitter to inspired?


14 Replies to “After the Glitter, Get Inspired”

  1. Oof. After Nanowrimo, December is traditionall a time of “Ok. Finish it, and then take a deep breath.” I finished my Nanowrimo, and now I am in the midst of taking my deep breath. Then I have to decide what time I’m going to buckle down and write for an hour at. It’ll probably be right after work.

    1. Hey congratulations on finishing your novel with NaNoWriMo. After accomplishing a great writing goal, the deep breath is so deserved!

  2. After the craziness of holidays I’m actually looking forward to the peace and quiet of writing. I do like the idea of appointment time. Telling my family that I have an appointment with my fictional friends might get me the space I need to write about them.

    1. I hope you’re not insinuating that… I’M…. crazy. Just kidding. We’re all just, well……creative.

  3. Wonderfully motivating post, Dianne. The new year arrives like a fresh beginning. By the time Christmas rolls around, I’m ready for a break. Once the decorations are put away, I’m ready to push up my sleeves and get started. In January I will have a new story to begin writing. I’m motivated by the possible contract and wanting to keep my readers engaged with my characters, so I will stay focused to write. Focused to write means setting aside other pleasures so I have quality writing time, but then I can celebrate when the story is finished.

  4. Great ideas, Dianne, for inviting the Creative right-brain-side to join the Analytical left-brain-side. As an engineer, this is a challenge with which I am frequently faced.

    I have found that doing creative things, such as writing, actually encourages more creative solutions in my engineering designs. However, it is also too easy to let the creativity run away…I have to corral it back to addressing the task at hand.

    Thanks for posting!

  5. Ah. Now I know why my productivity is so low in December: I’ve got glitter on my brain!
    But now it’s the week between Christmas and New Year’s and deadlines are looming again … and yes “looming” is the correct word. Time to shake the glitter out of my head and get focused.
    How do I do that?
    By getting up earlier than my family and trying to get a few things done before my daughter (who is still on vacation) wakes up. She’s still on “glitter time,” while I need to start thinking real-world time.

    1. I’m sure personality makes us all unique, but like Joe, I like to work the two areas of the brain to be most efficient. Finding the balance is a continual learning process. But goals and deadlines are also powerful motivators. I’ve been in your position, Beth, and it’s tough, but thankfully not impossible. Good luck on your new story, Lisa. That’s exciting.

  6. I loved the analogy of the glitter and creativity. 🙂 I got a lot done during NaNo, and I figured I could just sail through December with the same plan I used to be successful in November. Late nights and unexpected events put a screaming halt to my hopes of finishing my WIP in December. I’m back to getting up early so I can write. This is helping me get the glitter out of my brain and hopefully get the creativity flowing again. 🙂

    1. I like your comment, getting up early helps get the glitter out of your brain. During a time of stress caused by family health issues, it was the only time I could write–before my mind had time to latch back onto my problems.

  7. Very helpful thoughts, Dianne! Thank you. I also find that organizing my external world helps me get into work mode. In my case, it will be the clean-up after meeting my Jan 1st deadline.

  8. wonderful way to put it all in perspective, dianne…now if only i could have the kind of life where i actually make writing appointments and keep them 🙂 cheers, j

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