Versatility and Inspiration

“Nice Flower”, by Jiri Hodan

I am honored and delighted that Marina Sophia of findingtimetowrite has nominated me for a Versatile Blogger Award. I just recently found Marina’s blog and fell in love with her post on losing a treasured poetry notebook. She also has a graceful, fluid set of haikus that captures the essence of each month of the year. Thank you, Marina.

There’s two parts to the Versatile Blogger award. First, I share 7 truths about myself. I decided to follow Marina and list my 7 paths towards inspiration. Of course, since I’m a bit flighty, quirky, and concussed, the list changes daily, but that just adds to all the fun:

Today’s 7 Paths to Inspiration:

1) My children ~ because they are startling, inventive, sassy, patience-stretching, and creative. Plus, they make me take time-outs from the preoccupations that swirl inside my head. They get me to actually see the world. Always a helpful skill for any supposed writer.

2) The ocean ~ because of the tides, the sea birds, and the air. We are vacationing on the coast of Maine right now, and I never want to leave.

3) Reading ~ because I love to be stunned and amazed by strange and honest characters, plot twists, and an elegance of language. Reading has always been my home inside of time.

4) Walking ~ because it makes me pay attention to what’s outside my head. Plus, stories often seem to flutter from the trees or sprout from the grass.

5) Travel ~ because seeing new places catches my imagination and sends it spinning. I have a notoriously bad memory (true even before the concussion made it worse) but I remember images of Florence, Ireland, the Smoky Mountains, and Maine as if they were photographs inscribed onto my neural net.

6) Dogs ~ because they are goofy, slap-happy, and they live in the moment. These are skills I lack, so dogs inspire me to be a little better than myself.

7) Questions ~ because they draw me to new people, places, and ideas. I love to chat with strangers. They probably think I’m weird. I’m always asking questions and collecting stories. Questions strike me as windows and doors, popping open where I least expect them to lead.

The second part of the award is to list 15 bloggers I admire. I hope you’ll check them out. If they have the time and inclination, I hope they’ll add to the simmering soup and share what inspires them as well.

15 Blogs That Keep Me Reading:

1) Lindsey Mead, A Design So Vast ~ for the inspiration of honesty, truth, and courage

2) Maria Popova, Brain Pickings ~ for the inspiration of history, science, and quirky truths

3) Tawna Fenske, Don’t Pet Me, I’m Writing ~ for the inspiration of pee-your-pants humor

4) Elizabeth Grant Thomas ~ for the inspiration of questions, cycles, and labyrinths

5) Erin Morgenstern ~ for the inspiration of her “flax-golden tales”

6) Patricia Caspers, Fish Head Soup ~ for the inspiration of the perfect word, the perfect critique, coffee breaks and friendship

7) Brenda Gottsabend, How To Feather An Empty Nest ~ for the inspiration of stunning photographs, clear vision, and the pictures that lead me to my fables

8) Natalia Sylvester, Finding Truth Through Fiction ~ for the inspiration of really seeing where you are and using that knowledge in your writing

9) Nina Badzin, Writing, Parenting & More ~ for the inspiration of embracing writing, reading, children, and marriage and juggling them all with superior grace and humor (plus, she let me be a guest blogger!)

10) Melissa Gorzelanczyk, Peace & Projects ~ for the inspiration of simplicity and grounding

11) Julia Munroe Martin, wordsxo ~ for the inspiration of Maine, birds, gardens, eavesdropping, kitchen-table writing, parenting . . . ah, the list goes on

12) Rabia Gale, Writer at Play ~ for the inspiration of fairy tales, magic, and boundless imagination

13) Writer Unboxed ~ for the inspiration of experience, craft advice, and multiple pathways

14) Kathryn Dyche Dechairo, Listening to the Whispers ~ for the inspiration of beautiful artwork, nature, and puppy Ravyn

15) Yuvi Zalkow ~ for the inspiration of “Failed Writer” videos, incomparable self-honesty, and pantslessness

Thanks again Marina! What fun to travel the twists of inspiration, from dogs and sea tides to my favorite bloggity bloggers.

What inspires you? Please share your favorite brain waves in the comments below.

 

16 thoughts on “Versatility and Inspiration

  1. Thank you for your very sweet comments! I love your sources of inspiration (and am almost ashamed that I didn’t include my children) and I see we have many blogs in common that we enjoy. I will check the rest of them out too! It’s lovely to get these personalised recommendations.

    • This post was such fun. It was great to think about what really inspires me and the blogs that I enjoy. Thanks again!

  2. Interaction inspires me most. Hearing what people think and considering how they came to the thoughts they have is what sparks ideas for my work. Even when I’m examining the physical details of living life, I’m more interested in how my characters feel and why. Listening to people talk helps me do that.

    And like you, travel gets my imagination going (I loved San Francisco years ago), but I travel around Chicago, in different neighborhoods than mine. There’s no money for me to go any farther than my own “back yard.”

    Congratulations on your award, so well deserved.

    • Oh, I’d love to see Chicago! I’ve heard it is a vibrant city. Most of my travels were awhile ago (before kids). Maine is recent — that’s where we are now — but we can drive there, so it’s almost like my backyard. I’m craving distant cities though — Rome and Madrid and Athens. Someday.

      I agree with you on character being the heart of motivation, whether the character is real, in a conversation, or fictional, in a book. Thanks so much for sharing. I love your recent 100 words — Streetlamp, Spider, Quilt. Did a specific interaction inspire that story, or did it come mostly from the photograph? You packed so much into so few words. Loved it!

      • I discovered Cass and Val in a 100 word story for last Valentine’s Day — Lou Reed Tee. They showed up again in Sorry Pussycat before the recent one you kindly mentioned here. They’re my acknowledgement that people can love each other and be interesting without being cruel. I haven’t experienced that yet, but they help me keep hope alive. I like them. They might deserve a longer story sometime.

        This new one came from the photo and my imagination. I’m so glad you liked it. Thanks for mentioning it.

  3. Congratulations on the Versatile Blogger award — and thank you so much for giving me one as well! I share many of the things on your list of 7, but especially number 7 really jumped out at me as a way we’re alike — I’m also a very curious person and I love talking to people I don’t know and hearing their stories! It’s amazing what you hear, isn’t it? Thanks again Lisa!

  4. I loved reading your inspiration list, so much of what you listed resonated with me . . . and thank you for including my blog as one of your 15, it took me by surprise to see it there.

    • Your photos and artwork are stunning. I always love Ravyn puppy, and the birds you had up today were amazing.

  5. Our collaboration has been a sweet gift. You deserve every award and accolade that has and will come your way. Thank you for the honor of being one of your inspirations.

  6. I did not expect to see my blog on the list. Thank you! I’m glad you find it worth reading. I’m finding your blog a magical place to be, as well. I especially love your fables.

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