Finding Inspiration

I’m a pretty inspired person. I find inspiration in music. I find it in movies. I find it in books and blogs and friendships and in daily quiet time with God. Out here in California I find it when simply gazing at the sunshiney sky or a perfectly placed palm tree.
But sometimes the well runs dry.
So I made a list of the things that usually help me get my inspirational groove back.

Step 1: Turn to God
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This is usually the first place I turn. I admit, sometimes it takes a back burner in the quest for motivation and inspiration. But it should always be first. My favorite devotions are “My Utmost for the Highest” by Oswald Chambers and “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young. I try to do these consistently. When I reach a stagnant moment, I will always have a place to turn.

Step 2: Make a List
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After placing my path back in God’s hands (time and again) I try and list the dreams He’s placed on my heart. The passions that I can’t shake. The “unreasonable,” “unaccomplishable” musings that fill my brain and heart constantly. In list form, they seem much more attainable!

Step 3: Watch any and all Marvel movies
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For some reason the MCU really sparks my imagination! I dream of being a superhero. I dream of saving the world. And after watching Captain America or Avengers, it just seems easier to accomplish.

Step 4: Walk, Run, Jump, Spin
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When I’m in a season of laziness and drought, it’s easy to forget or ignore the things I love most. Happiness doesn’t seem attainable in the darker moments. But I love working out! I really do. I had a guy at Crunch gym, a guy who was trying to sell me on a membership by the way, tell me that people work out to lose weight or gain weight or look better, but never because they love it. To which I responded, that’s nice…show me to my spin class. Cause I love spinning!! The feel of aching muscles, muscles that you may have forgotten existed is what keeps me moving.

Step 5: Read
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In addition to my Bible and my daily devotionals, I love to read biographies and autobiographies of inspiring people. People like Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn and Bobby Kennedy and Mindy Kaling and Ellen Degeneres and Rock Hudson and Felicia Day and Amy Poehler and anyone else who strikes me as an inspiration. Their stories inspire my own.

Step 6: Write
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How can you expect to write about life if you aren’t living one. Staying home and catching up on 11 seasons of Supernatural may lead to some searing pieces about the show, but it won’t give you life experiences or insight into the greater struggle. So do all the other steps on this list and then write it all down. Share your life with people. Or take up a challenge like #NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month.) I’ve never written a book in my life…but I’m gonna try it!

How do you stay inspired when inspiration seems lost?

Nerd in the City Book Club

A Time to Reap

By Jonas Lee

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“After Carter Gabel arrives back from his most recent travel through time, he learns that his unpredictable syndrome isn’t the only thing in his life he’ll have to find control over.” – Back of the book

This day and age YA books about youths with extraordinary skills and powers are pretty common. But Jonas Lee’s voice stands out in the crowd! Carter Gabel is a confused boy who’s world is much bigger than he knows. And when thrust into circumstances beyond his control and understanding he not only rises to the challenge, but becomes better for it. In this future, there is something called Chronological Displacement Syndrome. Basically people with this “affliction” leap back in time at random and without choice. But what Carter doesn’t know if that this power is controllable. Along the way he learns more about his family, a girl he barely knows and about himself.

I had a chance to ask Jonas Lee a few questions about his book. Here’s my interview:

NitC: What were some of the stories and authors that influenced you growing up?

Jonas: It’s hard not to mention the likes of Stephen King being an influence as a writer. He has written something that everyone has seen at one point or another. Other great authors would include the likes of Joe Hill, Clive Barker, Lois Lowry and Madeline L’Engle. One of my favorite books I’ve actually read through the most is called The Thief of Always. I think writing from a younger perspective can help draw everyone toward that age again.

NitC: In a post Hunger Games/ Divergent/ YA centric world, did that effect your writing at all? DId you find yourself actively trying to distinguish your voice or did it come naturally?

Jonas: This novel was very organic. Honestly, I took no inspiration from any other YA novel. They are all very popular, but for me, it just wasn’t how I envisioned a teenager talking or acting. So I had to channel a little of my youth and mix that in with how I envisioned Carter to be.

NitC: Is this the book you set out to write? How did it change along the way, if at all?

Jonas: This book is not what I initially set out to be my first novel. Quite honestly, I completed my first book and tried the traditional route for awhile with trying to find an agent and so on and so on. In the meantime, I started this chapter by chapter story out of the reservoirs of my think tank. It got to be so fluid and fun to put together that there really was nothing much to think of or change throughout the way.

NitC: Do you personally identify with Carter Gabel and in what ways?

Jonas: Carter holds a certain quality of mine in regards to when he talks to himself. I always find myself saying something like a smartass like him inside my head. His outlook on his life is how I wish mine could be at times. Impetuously ready to do something and prepared for anything. I think I tend to overanalyze everything to a fault.

NitC: If you lived in the Star Wars Universe, would you be apart of the Rebellion of the Empire?

Jonas: Oooo, such a difficult one. I’d have to say out of the two, I would have to choose the Rebellion. Something about trying to be stealthy versus flexing might. Although, I would ultimately rather by part of the Bounty Hunter’s Guild. Always loved Boba Fett the most.

If you are looking for some post summer reading that is quick and captivating, the please go pick up A TIme to Reap right now!! And let me know what you think!

Get it here.

30 Days of Nerdy Hair

Day 21 – Elizabeth Bennett

Today’s inspiration is Kiera Knightly’s Elizabeth Bennett from Pride and Prejudice. Incidentally, my second favorite Jane Austen novel. (The first is Persuasion.) I’m a huge nerd for all things Austen!
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Start with some pearl pins.
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Also, the curlier the hair the better. I slept with wet heir to ensure the curliest of hair. Then I tamed a few pieces around my face and my bangs with my Chi.
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Lastly I added a braid straight over the front of my hair like a headband. Then added all the pearl pins.
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And voila!!
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