Friday, February 24, 2012

Filling Up the Writing Well

When I was kid, for a while we lived in a house with a well. Water was something I hadn’t thought much about until then, it was just there when I turned on the tap. But in the short time we lived in that house, the well went dry a number of times. I remember going with my Dad to get the water truck, bringing it back to our house and filling up that well.

This week, my writing mind was kind of like that well. Empty. I tried scraping the bottom to squeeze out a little more writing water. I set timers. I doodled. I looked back over my notebook for ideas to inspire me. But free writing about nothing sometimes just gives you nothing. So I gave up. I decided not to waste my time and energy on thinking about it and instead, I spent my time on the other things that fill up my life. My kids. My dog. My work.

Sometimes, the inspiration runs dry, and you need a little time away from it to give the well a chance to fill up again. It’s funny how ideas trickle into that writing well when you’re not even looking.


  1. I find that when I'm pushing myself the hardest to create are the times I really need to stop, step back and breathe the most. That well always fills back up if you give it time.

  2. I love the way the inspiration randomly shows up after you've given up trying to find it. It's like when you lose your wallet or phone or keys and you turn your house upside down for it... you give up, accepting that you'll never see the lost object again, and suddenly it's sitting right in front of you.

    1. So true, Bonnee! I wish my daughter's missing iPod would show up that way too...but I think it's permanently lost.

  3. I find I have to strongly agree with you on this.

  4. Sometimes trying to force it makes it worse, doesn't it? I'm with you--when the well is dry, I'll read or watch movies and get out into nature. I find all three seem to get my imagination moving again :)

    Hope you're doing well, Andrea!

    Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

  5. Sounds like you did the perfect thing. Sometimes for me taking a little break revitalizes my inspiration.


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