Inspiration

I just re-took the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment in preparation for a webinar this weekend. I hadn’t taken it in several years and was curious to see if my results were in alignment with the old ones.

They were pretty different.

But then again, so am I. Life has taken many twists and turns, professionally and personally, since … 2007 or 2008, which is about when I last did the StrengthsFinder.

I would say it’s pretty accurate to where I am now. My primary identified strengths include ones that relate to creativity and thought, which is completely me.

I was able to participate in part of a webinar yesterday, in which the presenter said something that I’ve heard before but that resonated with me differently. In paraphrase, it was:

Do what you love, not just what you know.

The gentleman is an agent who gets scripts made into movies and he was sharing about how he got into the biz. He talked about some of the films he’d been involved with and I was zoning in and out because it seemed a lot of ‘me’ talk — he wasn’t giving us insight or tips and tricks but was telling us about himself. However, when I heard whatever his words were that I’ve distilled down to the point above, I was captivated. I didn’t really need to hear anymore, and since I had to go back to work anyway, I dashed off the call.

But the comment didn’t leave me.

Like a persistent itch, it kept at me, late into the night. Reflecting on what I’ve published — the books primarily, I realize I have a couple works that I wrote from the ‘what I love’ space and others that were from the ‘what I know’ (or what I can research and find out) space.

I’d been void of inspiration for several weeks and had considered the various schools of thought on what writers should do with that:

  • Find something to inspire me to write;

  • Write something every day, even if it’s stream of consciousness;

  • Gather some writing prompts and go from there;

  • Edit something I’ve already written, which might lead to new inspiration;

  • All of the above.

I had no interest in doing any of that, so no words made it to any pages. Well, that’s not entirely true. I wrote a quick little piece for the first book in an anthology that’s due to come along next year; it’s a themed multi-volume affair and I think if the first submission is accepted, I could write additional pieces for all the volumes.

But new novels, novellas, screenplays? Nope.

Write what you love, not just what you know.

Talk about an ‘a-ha’ moment.

So, before the sun sets today, I plan to start drafting my next thing. I’m aiming for a novella that I can also write a screenplay for.

And there you have it.

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