What Is Inspiration (and where can I get it?)

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Inspiration is great. No, it’s better than great. It’s FABULOUS, even.
You gotta love those times when the creative engine is blasting out a turbo charged 6 cylinder high powered expression of unencumbered awesome long before you even sit down at the computer.

You’re driving, at work, or preoccupied in some other way, and something sparks it. You are going to explode if you don’t get to that keyboard or stylus. You are bursting at the seams when you finally sit down to let it out, and when you do, it pours down on you like a hurricane made of the best ideas from the collection of the world’s greatest minds.

But here’s the thing about inspiration: it comes and goes. We are not always going to be super-humanly inspired to create. It won’t always come out instantaneously brilliant and flavorful, like diner fries covered in melted cheese and gravy.

Some days, we just don’t feel like being so damn brilliant at all.

And some days, we may feel like it, but we’re blocked.

*stares at blank screen for an hour*

*draws a line, erases it*

*stares at blank screen for another hour*

It’s on those days we may begin to question our own sanity. We may ask ourselves what in the hell we are doing this “thing” for anyway. We may curse, cry, drink heavily, or get lost in whatever binges we happen to find on Netflix . . . .*ahem*

But that’s part of being an artist…and by the way, I hate calling myself an “artist”.
In fact, I dislike anyone that labels themselves in that manner. I write poetry – I’m not a poet. I build bridges, I’m not a bridge builder…but that’s a story for another time.

“Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work.” ~Chuck Close (painter)

The truth is, unless we are Stephen King or David Beckham, we can’t be superstars every day. Some days will be less than glam. But those uninspired days are important for bridging the other, brilliant days. Those days keep the pump primed for when the inspiration begins to flow. Let me take it a step further and say that those days actually enable the inspiration to flow more easily to us when the time comes.

So do what I do…
Take it as it comes. Don’t try to force the faucet to open more than it should. If you’re not feeling it, distract yourself.
Read a few pages from a book. Go outside and stare at nothing. Read the back of a box of Capt’n Crunch.
You can look for inspiration, but when you’re ready, inspiration will find you

– Michael Versandi


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