October 8

Where the heck do good writing ideas come from?


    The appearance of good writing ideas is the greatest mystery of a writer’s life. People who have brilliant ideas say the ideas just come to them. I’ve heard people use phrases like, “divine download” and “inspiration of the muse,” but there’s a sense that they are merely the receivers of an idea that changes their lives.

    How do we tap into this mysterious source of brilliant writing ideas?

    I think we can do a few things, actually. One is a mindset shift, two are practical actions.

    First, the mindset shift. We can focus on abundance.

    Too often, we buy into the idea that everything’s been said and all the good ideas are gone. But take a step back for a minute. How many times do we, as a culture, think that everything’s been done, and then our mind is blown with the newest invention? In the early 20th century, it was the car, then the refrigerator, then the telephone, then the iPhone. There were thousands more inventions than just those, but each of those—car, refrigerator, telephone, iPhone—completely and totally revolutionized life. How can we possibly think that we’ve already said it all?

    What would our world be like if George R.R. Martin thought that every fantasy novel had ever been written? Or if Tony Robbins thought every self-help book had already been written? Or if E.L. James thought every romance novel had been written? Okay, well, I could have done without 50 Shades of Gray, but a lot of housewives’ lives would be really different without that steamy trilogy.

    The point is that in our entire human history, we have never, ever even come close to running out of ideas. Why would we suddenly be out of ideas now?

    I believe that we were created by an infinite being. I call the being God. You can call Him whatever you want. But I believe that if we were made by an infinite God, we are, innately, full of infinite possibilities.

    We just have to embrace a mindset of abundance. There are plenty of ideas. There is plenty of space. There are plenty of readers. There is plenty of time. We just have to be open to receiving.

    That brings us to the actions steps.

    Second, make time to receive that abundance.

    Carve out 25 minutes in your day to be present, to be available to receiving ideas. As writers, I think our primary “job” is to show up and write. That’s it, folks. It’s simple. Make time on a regular basis to sit down and write. If you are called to write, you’d better answer that call on a regular basis, if not daily, at least several times a week.

    Third, seek out inspiration.

    God may not give you a blinding white light and a vision. He may be putting inspiration and resources in your path, but you have to actively seek them. Read widely, attend interesting events, follow your passions. If God put a calling on your heart to write, then He put passions in your life that will lead you closer to that calling. Follow your intuition and passions, even if it doesn’t make sense to anyone else (why are you taking six months off to travel the world? why are you going kayaking down a Rocky Mountain river? Why are you learning how to make wine?) if you’re drawn to it, go for it. The inspiration may seem random, but you never know when God’s going to give you a divine download, so have a little faith and follow your passions.

    So, these steps are pretty simple but take a lot of gumption to follow through. Cultivate a mindset of abundance, make time to receive that abundance, and seek out inspiration.

    Click below to watch my more in-depth video explanation. If you’re struggling with being open to this infinite expanse of writing ideas, anxiety in your writing, take the next 15 minutes to watch this video:

    Where do good writing ideas come from_cover

    If you like this video format, you should download the Periscope app onto your phone and follow me @MorganGMac. I scope at least five days a week, all about writing motivation, inspiration, and advice.

    What about you? Do you usually operate out of a lack mindset, or an abidance mindset?


    You may also like

    Which "Publishing Path" is right for your book?

    There are FOUR different publishing paths for the modern author. Ready to discover which one's right for YOUR book?