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Writing Inspiration: How Authors Can Remain Inspired and Avoid Burnout

Turgay Birand

September 8, 2016

writing inspiration Being an author can be one of the most exhilarating experiences in the world. Being an author can also be one of the most stressful experiences in the world. All authors can relate to the daily highs and lows. In this post we will discuss ways to find inspiration when you are feeling low. These tips will help you avoid writer’s block, become more creative and simply get out of bed on the tough days.

1. Create An Inspiring Workspace

What does your workspace look like? One of the easiest ways to be more inspired to write is to create an inspiring workspace. Adding pictures, quotes and all of the tools you need to succeed can make writing much more enjoyable. Do you only write in one place? If your primary workspace isn’t giving you the inspiration you need, try writing somewhere new. This could be a coffee shop, a park bench, the beach, etc. With today’s technology you can write anywhere, anytime. Take advantage of this before you fall into a rut.

2. Wear The Right Attire

What do you wear when you write? This may be an aspect of your writing process that you haven’t put much thought into. Afterall, how can what you are wearing affect your ability to write? You may be surprised to find out how much choosing the right attire can affect your mood and productivity. So, what is the right attire? My answer to this question is simple: comfort is key. 

3. Work In Spurts

How long do you write before taking a break? Research has found that people who take breaks once per hour are much more productive than those we do not. It is easy to think that you are getting more done by binge writing for hours straight, but countless studies prove this is not the case. The problem with writing without breaks is that it leads quickly to burnout. Burnout is one of the main causes of lows for authors, so you must do everything you can to avoid it.  The best part about breaks is they allow you to find new inspiration. It is easy for authors to get caught up in the writing process and lose creativity. Taking breaks will allow you to remove yourself from your book for a few minutes and think of new possibilities.

4. Walk It Out

Writing inspiration Did you know that it has been scientifically proven that walking makes you 60% more creative? Some of the world’s most successful people, including Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg, are known to be avid walkers. As a writer, boosting creativity is always a good thing. When you find yourself starting to have writer’s block, consider going for a walk. Make sure you bring your phone with you so you can keep track of any ideas that come to mind. A tool like Dragon Dictate will make it easy for you to write down your thought by simply talking. Another benefit to walking is a physical health boost. Writing a novel can be taxing on your mental and physical health. It is easy to forget to exercise, eat and even bathe. Seriously, please take a shower once a day. Going for walks is one of the best things you can do, both for yourself and your book.

5. Naps Are Your Friend

The National Sleep Foundation recommends that you take a 20-30 minute nap everyday. The benefits of napping daily include: 
  • Increased alertness
  • Prevents burnout
  • Heightens creativity
  • Improves mood
It is easy to lose inspiration when you are downright exhausted. Avoid this feeling by making sure you find time to nap. It may be 30 minutes away from your novel, but it will allow you to remain focused in the long-term. This article by Nestmaven has some great tips if you're interested in learning more about naps.

6. Celebrate Small Milestones

An easy way to stay inspired throughout the process of writing your book is to celebrate the little things. Most authors celebrate large milestones, such as:
  • Finishing their first draft
  • Submitting their final draft
  • Launching their book
These are all milestones worth celebrating, but they only come so often. Find smaller milestones to celebrate such as:
  • Deciding on a title
  • Settling on character names
  • Completing your first chapter
  • Going one night without waking up in a panic (we have all been there)

7. Don’t Take It Too Seriously

Writing inspiration Though we may write to make a living, at the end of the day we also write because it is fun. When you first start writing you do it for the joy it brings you. Being able to bring stories to life is an amazing feeling. An addicting feeling even. Unfortunately, many authors begin to lose the joy as time goes on. This is due in large part to taking writing too seriously. Writing may be a hobby or your primary profession. Either way, don’t forget why you write.

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