Throwback Thursday is a series where we take a look back at some of AWP’s most popular posts. Enjoy!
by Liam Cross
If you’re anything like me (someone who loves the outdoors to begin with) then this won’t be an issue for you. Chances are you make time every now and then to get yourself out to some beautiful, serene spots to enjoy the tranquility of the outdoor world and all that comes with it.
You probably use this time as a means to clear your mind, a tool to relieve the stresses that develop due to everyday life and also as a way to remind yourself that you are a small spec on the window which is our colossal earth and that in turn, the earth is just a small spec on the window that is our universe.
Or maybe it’s only me who gets all philosophical when staring at a waterfall? I don’t know. But what I do know, is that the beauty in the outdoors which lies all around us, can make a great source of inspiration for any writer, of any type, of any genre!
I tried it at the beach once. I drove over to the beach in my car and walked along the top of the beach with my notebook and pen. At my local beach there’s like a grassy area which sits about 20 feet above sea level and the grass is lined with boulders all the way along to protect it from the tide. I walked along the grassy area, looking down at the boulders. When I found a flat one, I climbed down them and took a seat. It was amazing. I felt as though it was just me and the vastness of the sea.
I couldn’t be seen from the housing area behind me or anyone walking along because they’d have to look right over the edge to spot me and I couldn’t be seen from along the beach as no one was on it due to the tide being all the way in. I felt as though I was at one with the world and I picked up my notepad and pen and let that feeling spill out onto the pages.
It doesn’t just have to be a place as tranquil or as serene though. Those types of places are great if you’re looking to write emotive descriptions of a surrounding or landscape, or to write some very metaphorical poetry. But say for instance you were looking to write a scene which had a lot of dialogue or maybe even something as dialogue-based as a play – then people watching is the way to go. I’ve tried this type of thing too.
Get yourself over to your nearest city centre, again with your notepad and pen or even your laptop, and find a seat somewhere amongst the crowds. Then all you have to do is sit tight and listen. Listen to the ways in which people converse, listen to the ways that they stutter and how long they pause for. What topics they talk about and what other things top say other than ‘oh’ when they encounter unexpectedness.
It’ll help you to write much more compelling and realistic dialogue which will give the reader the feeling that they’re there, listening in on a real conversation that includes real people. It all helps to make the illusion that little bit more believable and relatable, which in the long run, will effectively have your reader even further hooked on your story.
There really is inspiration all around us! I love taking walks in woodland area or through valleys and along beaches. Nature is beautiful and I find that its beauty is a fantastic source of inspiration when looking to free your soul and write your heart out.
And as I said, busy areas in which there are lots of people are a great way to give you character ideas and to help make your writing that little bit more unique and real. So try it. Take a walk out in the wilderness or into the city centre every now and then and take a notepad with you. And taking a notepad out into the tranquility of the wilderness, or the bustling city centre, that certainly makes for some:
Original article here.
Guest post contributed by Liam Cross. Liam has loved writing ever since he can recall. Even as a small child in primary school, the craft of writing had always been an interest of his, and he now delegates his time to novel-writing – and of course, the occasional short-story or poem here and there. His ultimate goal is to be a published author, but he can also be found training in the local gym for upcoming bodybuilding shows.