By: Muhammed Abdullahi Tosin*
Now that’s not palatable for you!
But wait! What if you could be helped to effortlessly gather ideas to get your creative juice flowing? What if you could be shown some common, often-neglected, but insanely effective means of spawning writing inspiration? You’d like that, right? Surely, I dare say.
Below are some ordinary tips capable of producing extraordinary result. You have a right to doubt me, but read this to the end, so you can have evidence to prove I’m telling lies.
#1: Read Voraciously
It’s true you don’t need to be a bookworm before you can succeed as a writer. But believe me, you need to read – and do that a lot. If your passion is to write on blogging, you need to read avidly on it. If it’s photography, you must be at par with trends and happenings in photography. Whatever your field is, be up to date on it. Even more, you’d need to read outside your comfort zone to broaden your horizon and have a wider reservoir of ideas to draw on.
#2: Take a stroll
I’ve tried this several times and I guarantee it works magic. Walking the landscape is a great way to gather inspiration about which to write. When you do so, open your eyes and observe closely, don’t just look. While you’d not be required to stare at anything and everything on the street, watching one or two funny, ridiculous, inspiring or pitiable things can spark your creative side.
#3: Take a Voyage
This is an extension of the last point. Travelling has so many benefits for writers. You’d get to see large expanse of seas, wide landscape, green and fresh flora and fauna, the good, the bad and the ugly sides of life. Also, great writing ideas could crop up in your mind while waiting on trains, in airports, on the bus and you’d often find your pre-conceptions challenged.
#4: Be Imaginative
The finest place to cook up ideas is your mind. Sometimes, it may help to close your eyes and experience a self-induced hallucination. Just create pictures – still and moving – in your mind. If you cook up the mechanics of a clock for instance, some great ideas which may spring up include:
- The hands work in harmony; so being a team player, not a lone ranger, helps.
- The clock’s working is visible, transparent and open to the scrutiny of all; what if our governance process in Nigeria could be, too?
- The clock may be dead as stone, but it’s correct at least twice a day; so no one is a write-off…a villain may one day be the hero.
- The clock is diligent, committed to its work, accurate and waiting for none; hardwork pays…it leads to efficiency.
#5: Join like minds
Birds of a feather flock together…aren’t that what they say? So being around other writers, and working on exercises, reviews and critiques, can help spark new ideas. Look for a close-by writers’ circle, an online writing groups, forums or a weekly class. You might even consider taking an online course in writing.
While reviewing others’ works, a single word, a phrase, sentence or an expressed idea may spur up some others in your subconscious.
So in all of these, if you can’t write immediately, it’s vital you take down notes as ideas can slip away as easily and swiftly as they pop up.
Now you should have evidence to prove you can’t be helped to generate ideas. What do you think?
*Muhammed Abdullahi Tosin is a professional freelance writer and the CEO of Naija Writers’ Coach. He posts essay contest announcements and teaches how to write winning essays at www.NaijaWritersCoach.com. You may follow him on Twitter @Oxygenmat