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By Johannes Helmold

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writing inspirationAs a writer, I get to hear how my colleagues sometimes say, “Waiting for inspiration is for newbies—a mature writer can write anything anytime.” To some extent, they are right; a professional writer does not feel the complacency amateur writers usually have to bear. However, I would not be gullible enough state that inspiration is useless. On the contrary, I believe it is one of the most important conditions for successful writing.

I would define inspiration as a mix of motivation, urge, and a free flow of thoughts. Remember your mood when you returned from a super-energetic concert, found a solution to a problem, or wanted to tell your friends so much that you didn’t know where to start from. Inspiration feels like this, though its intensity may vary. One person feels it as a mental stillness, when all the thoughts become clear, simple, and sorted out. Others would define it as a hurricane, from which one has to pull out the ideas they need. Anyways, I hope I gave you a nice picture.

It looks like a rather powerful force, doesn’t it? Based on personal experience, I can guarantee you that inspiration crushes through writer’s blocks like a wrecking ball through plasterboard. Of course, you can’t write a book solely on inspiration, but you can overcome the most difficult moments of your writing with its help.

The main aspect about inspiration is that it usually comes and goes—sometimes, all of a sudden. But in most cases, a writer (as well as artists or photographers) can trigger it; so, the expression “seeking for inspiration” should be understood literally. You must constantly feed your mind and perception with meaningful things: music, images, prose and poetry…. Your body needs food to produce actions—and your mind needs the ideas of other people to produce its own ones. This is natural!

Don’t plagiarize—this is different from getting inspired by the work of other people. Plagiarism is like breaking into somebody’s home; getting inspired is like borrowing tools from this person to build your own house.

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