People often ask where I find inspiration. My answer: everywhere. To quote one of my favorite movies, Sister Act 2:
If you want to be somebody, if you want to go somewhere, you better wake up and pay attention.
This video by Jarbas Agnelli, Birds on the Wires, is a prime example of finding inspiration in everyday places. You may have seen it before—it’s made its rounds and has even been the subject of a TED talk—but if not, may it serve as a wake-up call for your Muse.[youtube.com/watch?v=LoM4ZZJ2UrM]
Today, if able, set aside thirty minutes or more to go outside and take a walk. Take your notebook and pen, camera, or whatever else you need to document your experience. Pay attention to your six (yes, six) senses: What do you see? What noises do you hear? What aroma does the world have today? How does the air taste? Feel the wind or sun or snow against your skin.
And finally, to address that sixth sense, what does your intuition tell you? What does your mind’s eye see? Where does your muse lead you with all this information? That, my friend, is inspiration.
I’ll end with the wise words of Anne Lamott in Bird by Bird:
There is ecstasy in paying attention…You get your intuition back when you make space for it, when you stop the chattering of the rational mind.
ML Swift is a writer of Middle Grade, Young Adult, and Adult fiction, although he dabbles in many genres.
An Alzheimer’s caregiver for the past ten years, he has published several articles on The Alzheimer’s Reading Room, the largest online website catering to that community, and plans to write a novel about his experience in caregiving.
He resides in Florida with his dogs, Rameses and Buster, attempting to reclaim his side of the bed.