Young Adult Dark Fantasy Fiction

Creating from the Familiar

You may recall that I’m a resident writing coach on Writers Helping Writers (WHW), a wonderful resource for authors. 

Recently, I blogged on WHW about how, in times of stress and pressure, it could be beneficial to return to the familiar. 

I believe each one of us is a creative–whether that be in how you craft spreadsheets, a family schedule, scrapbooking, doodling, needlepointing, gardening, writing…it doesn’t matter. If you have an activity that you do that refuels your spirit, that’s you, tapping into your creative self. And if you’re a reader, you’re a dreamer. There is no sidestepping that.

So on that note, I’ll share an excerpt from my post on WHW. Of course if you’d like to read the full version, hop over to WHW and make sure to peruse their site while you’re there!

To Good Books and Living From Joy,


Creating from the Familiar

Have you watched The Mandalorian yet? It’s worth it just to listen to the opening theme music. It has this haunting western-scifi feel that is utterly unique, compelling, and has a complexity that allows you to discover something new each time you listen.

My husband, being the musician he is, found this video about how the composer of The Mandalorian, Ludwig Göransson, found the Mando sound. 

What struck me about Ludwig’s process was how he created a piece of art so unique by returning to the common and familiar instruments of his childhood.

Ludwig also mentioned multiple times that he “locked himself in his studio for a month,” away from his normal sound equipment and high-end sound tech, in order to create these Mando songs. 

Most of us don’t have that luxury; however, it does make me wonder if this Academy Award-winning composer was dealing with a little bit of writer’s block–complete conjecture–and needed to clear his mind and workspace of distraction.

Maybe he needed to return to the familiar to create.

Are you struggling with finding inspiration or the creative energy to write lately? It would be completely understandable, if so. Maybe a return to your familiar will help unearth a deep well of creative energy.

Revisit Childhood for Inspiration

When was the last time you read your favorite book from when you were a kid? Maybe the first chapter book that made you fall in love with words?

The oldest patootie and I recently started reading A Wrinkle in Time together. Her first time, my fortieth. And I was struck by the way the rhythm of Madeline L’Engle’s words fell into place for me. Much like Ludwig going back to the recorder, rereading one of my favorite childhood books cracked opened the well to my struggling creativity (thanks 2020). 

As I rediscover this book through the eyes of my patootie, I’m struck by how much Ms. L’Engle’s descriptions impacted the way I write today. Not only is it inspiring and motivating me to deepen my descriptions, but it is helping add a layer of creativity to my current work.

Play That Funky Music

Music plays such an important part in many authors’ writing process–so much so that it’s fairly common for an author to post their book’s playlist on their website. But have you ever tried listening to some old favorites to inspire an emotion you need to write? Maybe an angsty song from your teenage years to inspire betrayal or love at first sight. Or your wedding song. Maybe yours and your best friend’s favorite tunes or artist? 

Music is important because it hits us in such a personal and unique way, and different music affects us differently at different times. And when we hear those songs again, we often remember where we were, who we were with, and how we were feeling with startling accuracy.

Keep reading the full article on Writers Helping Writers!

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