Inspiration can be a fickle beast. Sometimes it hits you like a ton of bricks…usually right before you drift off to sleep or are in a position where writing notes is an impossibility, like driving down the road or standing in the shower. So, in times when I’m ready to write and can’t find my muse, I find it’s important to keep as much manufactured inspiration on hand as possible. I try to keep trinkets, tchotchkes, and motivational items in sight around my work area to help me stay in the groove.
So far in my writing career, my main subject matter has centered around motorcycles. It’s really easy to find Motorcycle knick-knacks, but I try to be as specific as I can with my totems. For my ongoing Kings of Chaos Motorcycle Club series, I use my display poster board from signing events propped on the back of my desk like a backdrop. I have a miniature replica of the main character’s motorcycle from the first book, and a topographic map of the Rough River in Kentucky – the real life geographic location for the fictional town in the series. I even have a Lego mini-fig biker to portray the hero from the series. Lastly, there’s a deconstructed and expanded bullet display from Ballistic Concepts.
Just because I haven’t technically started my other series doesn’t mean I haven’t already started collecting inspiration for when the time comes. My next series will be a dystopian story about a broken criminal justice system. I have a few items to keep me focused when I’m ready, such as jail stats, court assignments, city maps, police patches, and a pen holder that’s in the shape of a revolver cartridge.
After that, it’ll probably be a toss-up between a zombie series and a couple books about a superhero. I have a signed shotgun shell from one of the creators of The Walking Dead (not Robert Kirkman), a zombie bobble head, signed zombie art prints from Arthur Suydam, and the zombie novel series from Scott Kenemore. If the time isn’t right for the undead, then I’ll strap on a cape and bring out some classic comic book cover tins, a replica of Tony Stark’s arc reactor, and of course my comic collection that’s housed just across the room in case I ever need some motivation (or more likely a quick distraction).
This is just one of the tactics I use to stay engaged with my WIP, or work in progress. Drop a comment below and let me know what methods you use to maintain focus with your projects.
Thank you, that is all.