Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Finding Refreshing Story Ideas When The Well’s Gone Dry

Writers tend to grind away, pursuing their passion, but occasionally the well of our creativity becomes parched. We come to a point of creative fatigue. Don’t fear—it’s not permanent.

When we feel discouraged and wrung out, there are methods to refreshing your creative spirit.

According to, creativity is the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules and patterns, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, and interpretations. Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?

Sometimes we just need to recognize the need to disengage from the grind and embrace the necessity to refresh our creative souls.

As believers we get to hang onto these glorious truths: 
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1
“So God created human beings in his own image.” Genesis 1:27a

God is the ultimate Creator, and He fashioned us in His image. When I look at it that way, my creativity is seen as an extension of my relationship with God and a component of my personality. I’m creative because God created me that way.

Our world is full of ideas; we just need to train ourselves to find them.

Here are several methods you can use to refresh your creativity:
  • Pray:
    • Keep yourself spiritually charged. Remember Who your writing partner is. The one who calls you is faithful, and He will do it. 1 Thess. 5:24         
    • Journal spiritual thoughts about your writing life, story idea, etc.
    • Write a prayer. Ask the Lord for His anointing on your writing and your writing journey. Ask for clarity of thought, passion, commitment, and the time to pursue your writing goals. 
  • Keep a writer’s journal:
    • A journal may include memories, jokes, story ideas, writing tricks, dreams, and descriptions of people, places or situations.
    • A writer’s journal may be as simple as a little notebook you carry in your purse or it could be a word document on your computer.
    • Train yourself to be alert for fresh ideas when they occur, and write them down. 
  • Invest in your health:
    • Go for a walk, hop on a treadmill—just get moving. Your imagination won’t work a maximum capacity if your brain is sluggish. 
  • Read a great book:
    • Sometimes reading great writing gives you the itch to write yourself. 
  • Try free writing:
    • Give yourself a time limit (10-15 minutes) and let your fingers fly over the keyboard. Even if you’re writing crazy nonsense, you may spark a thought or idea that will springboard you back to work. 
  • Take a creative field trip:
    • Visit a museum, listen to soul-stirring music, go to the movies.
    • Spending time in other creative environments, spurs the desire to be creative in your own work. 
  • Take some photographs:
    • Grab your camera and take a field trip to a local park, busy shopping area, or town square. Let yourself focus on whatever catches your fancy. You may look back at your images and see a spark of an idea in a situation, location or face of people being alone or interacting with each other. *Just don’t appear to be a stalker.
  • Try to write in a different place:
    • Sometimes a small change of scenery can help you overcome a block
    • Leave your laptop at home and write with a pen and notebook
    • I once had a very productive writing session while waiting for my car at the mechanic’s.
Not every solution may be the one for you, so pick and choose to see what refreshes your creativity and fires your productivity.