What to do if inspiration is MIA

. 2 min read

I've been trying to write some poetry lately. It's kind of a cop out when compared to novel writing but it's still better than writing nothing in my opinion. And lately, I've been stressing out about other things, so inspiration hasn't exactly been the greatest. Although I firmly believe it'll come back if I just try to write.

But poetry doesn't seem to work, either, and I have a valid theory as to why this is the way it is. I've talked about this before on WIP - that in order to write good and satisfying poetry, it's not what but when that counts. I've written my greatest poems over the years always in an emotional rollercoaster, meaning whenever I had heartache, anger, frustration, love, or fear filling my head.

And lately, I've had none of those.

Then again, I pretty much emptied my emotional carriage when I published my latest poetry collection back in June this year. Perhaps I haven't had the time to fill up the tanks yet.

Then again, yesterday I wrote five poems that, when in the process of writing them, didn't seem very good - but when I reread them this morning they were quite ok. Might even make the next collection. (Who am I kidding - they're totally making the next collection, regardless of what I think of them. Because someone else might enjoy them even if I don't. Unless I decide in the editing phase that they're pure crap. In which case no one will ever see them, period.)

The noteworthy thing is that I felt GREAT in the evening before bed for having produced. I felt like I did something to move myself closer to the person I wish to become. And I want to feel that way every evening for the rest of my life.

Then I woke up this morning, went to the office, opened the file with the poetry, and could barely scratch up one sucky piece. A piece that will totally not move me closer to the person I wish to become. A piece so pure crap that it will definitely not make the next collection. And after typing that down, nothing else came out. I felt, well, not empty, but blocked somehow.

As if the blockage somewhere up my left nostril was stopping me from being creative.

Good news is that even if I can't find the power to write prose or poetry, I can always write a non-fictive WIP article to feel productive again.

Thus the lesson of the day: even if the inspiration isn't there for your primary creative medium, you can be productive and get satisfaction through another. Try the primary again later.