For the longest time, I thought that keeping track of everyday things was below me. I wanted to talk about ‘bigger’ things. I wanted to deal with things that were beyond the mundane, but it turned out that I was wrong to start where I did.
I started in the larger ideas. I wanted to live in those larger ideas. It turns out that that’s the wrong place.
Starting in the smaller ideas, the everyday moments is where writing and thinking really begins. I keep a 4-minute diary. I also have a planner. I often write down my thoughts and feelings in the exercises that I do almost daily. All of the things that happen daily can turn into bigger things, bigger ideas. It’s about looking for patterns and finding a better way to look at the world around you.
I thought for a long time that as a fiction writer, I didn’t need to even consider the everyday things. I needed to think about the fictional things and focus on things outside of me. That wasn’t true. Some of my best ideas have spawned out of little descriptions of everyday things.
It is a little bit cliched to say that you can find inspiration in the little things, but I will go a step further and say that the inspiration comes from reflecting on the little things. Ideas spawn from the strange habits that I have or the way that I observe the world. Keeping a journal helps me track not only the images I see, but the way that I look at the world.