Inspiration: A Unique and Extremely Personal Phenomenon

In an interview with The Guardian (found here), Kevin Barry, author of novels such as the Impac Dublin literary award winner City of Bohane, discusses a lot of interesting topics; though none of which peaked my interest as much as where he derived the inspiration to use famous musician John Lennon as the topic of his latest fiction novel, Beatlebone. Barry talks about how his “initial spark of inspiration is always place,” and how for this latest novel he was inspired to write about how “John Lennon is looking for his private island and can’t find it,” when he was “cycling around… Clew Bay” and “remembered that John Lennon owned one of the islands there.” At reading this I began to think about inspiration and everything that influences us when we, writers, are either writing or even just trying to come up with something to write about. In this interview Kevin Barry attributes any time he was inspired to his physical location at the time, but what really stuck out to me about the concept of inspiration is how extremely unique and different it is for every single person. Take myself for instance, being someone whose primary focus in their writing is in their dialogue, most of my inspiration comes from the daily conversations my friends and I have about utterly pointless things (such as if we can make this potato cannon fire beer cans), but I am willing to bet that every person in this class has a different answer. It also wouldn’t surprise me if some people couldn’t come up with an answer, because their inspiration comes from so many different aspects of their lives. I’m very curious as to what everyone thinks. Try discussing it here on the Blawg; and even if you don’t want to actually comment here try taking the time to at least think about it. Who knows what you’ll learn about yourself, and even your writing for that matter.

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