What Inspires You?

Hey lovelies! Someone asked me a question today that I receive quite a bit, but it made me stop and think for a second, because in the past I'd never really pondered it with any great consideration. It's one of those oh-so-common questions that writers and musicians alike get asked over and over and over again (you know the ones - at author signings or musician meet-and-greets, it's the question that inevitably gets the exact same answer because you've been asked so many times that it almost feels rehearsed!).

The question was: "where do you get your ideas from"?

To give you some context - the asker had just read Castle of Night and Vicariouslytwo very different pieces of writing, and I believe that her true question is what inspires me - in my writing and music and really, everything in between.

But you see, it's so difficult to answer that question without filling three and a half books. There's just so much that inspires me - so much thought that goes into every single word, every single guitar chord, every single lyric that makes up my best songs, poetry, and prose. Heck, the asker of that oh-so-innocent question probably never thought it would inspire this very post.

So what, then, inspires me in my music and writing?

Poetry. Art. Love. Heartbreak. Loss. Family. Books. Children. Music. Numbers. Dreams. In short: everything and anything - ranging from the absolutely mundane (coffee shops!) to the nothing short of magical (Wizards, anyone?).

Lately, though, a lot of my own work has been inspired by what I take in: namely, music and books. Obviously, I've fallen head over heels for both of these - I've made no secret of that. But I'm constantly amazed by how absolutely wonderful they can be - and not only wonderful, but funny and thought-provoking and romantic and mysterious and terrifying. I'm shocked at how a stack of paper or a hollowed out piece of wood with some string attached can make people cry, and laugh, and believe in things they'd never imagined could be true before.

I think ultimately, that's what I want for my own writing and music: to make people feel something. To take their story and, if only for three and a half minutes until the piano fades out, intertwine it with my own. To provide them with a reflection, a mirror, a way of translating this ever-confusing world. And all of these things that inspire me - that's what they do for me, too.

So, writers and musicians - what inspires you? Have you ever thought about it, or is it something that comes naturally? What's your goal for your own work? Let me know in the comments - I'd love to have a discussion.

love, Topaz