Friday, October 22, 2010

Showing Up




I was at the Texas Book Festival this past weekend. I was lucky enough to be on two panels. One of them, in the picture above, was a panel with fantasy writers called Portals to Imagined Worlds. It had Ingrid Law, Cinda Williams Chima, Carolyn Cohagan, myself, and was moderated by another accomplished writer, Greg Leitich Smith.

It was a fun panel. One of the questions was about where we got our inspiration. The others on the panel gave thoughtful, wise answers and I said I bought my inspiration out in a small town in West Texas. I didn't mention that it came in small tins and looked a lot like Altoids but I'll tell you. Very tasty.

I wish.

No, the truth is, in my humble opinion, that while inspiration is very real it seldom just appears out of nowhere. It usually comes to someone who is working every day. That is, you have to be engaged in writing your novel, struggling with each problem, trying to work it out, get the story out, get it right, even on those days you can't actually get to your computer. That's when inspiration comes. It comes because you're in a place where it can come to you. And I believe the way you put yourself in that place is by showing up.

8 comments:

lindseylane said...

Hey Brian...so I've been meaning to tell you that I've been reading and enjoying your blog for a while now. You've also been an inspiration in mine several times (three, I think). Today, in particular.

Thank you,

Linds'

lindseylane said...

ooops...forget to tell you where I live...

lindseylane said...

Website: http://www.lindseylane.net
Blog: http://www.lindseylane.net/blog/

okay...so i'm a little inept at this leaving comments business...

brian yansky said...

Thanks, Lindsey. I've been to your blog before, too, and always found thoughtful and interesting comments. So mutual admiration club, here.

Jessi E. (The Elliott Review) said...

I attended the panel that you were on, and I was VERY inspired by all the comments that were made about the balance between inspiration and actually getting down to business. It's my goal to become published one day, but that panel (especially the things you and Cinda said) made me realize that it won't happen if I don't get my butt to work regardless of my feelings.

brian yansky said...

Thank you, Jessi. That's nice to hear. Good luck and keep writing.

Lori W. said...

I found your post via Nikki Loftin's blog, and it's perfect for my uninspired morning of writing. Nothing is working, but I'm trying to just keep typing and hoping inspiration comes and that I get unstuck. Thanks for these words!

brian yansky said...

Thanks, Lori.