Gregor Connections LLC

Inspiration Identified

Inspiration Identified—What Speaks to You?

Shanna D. Gregor

Have you ever felt uninspired? I’m an idea person. My wheels are always spinning, and yet, I’ve had those moments when the idea bank felt empty. What was spinning in my head was nowhere close to the destination my client had in mind for my writing assignment. So we’ll start here with the list and future blogs coming up, I’ll cover these topics more in depth. Here’s a list—some ideas to help you stir the pot of creativity and open up new avenues of inspiration.

bench for quote

  1. People Watching
  2. Reading
  3. Tours for Inspiration (art galleries, historical sites, nature)
  4. Music
  5. Break your routine and do something completely different
  6. Explore quotes on a particular topic
  7. Research (ask questions on social media)
  8. Journaling (review old ones)
  9. News (human interest and success stories)
  10. Life from a child’s perspective
  11. Get moving – exercise and fresh air
  12. Travel or vacation (day trips or a week away)

Bonus – Freewriting can also inspire. Click here to read Freewriting – Learing to Fall without Fear

Reading for New Inspiration

by Shanna D. Gregor

I think I was born with a love for books. I remember my mom reading The Pokey Little Puppy and The Little Engine That Could until I could read it myself. Reading opens the door to new worlds and stirs the creative hearts of everyone—especially writers.

With the information and technology at our fingertips today, you can open your computer or tablet and read about anything your heart desires. I like to search quotes online about topics I’m interested in writing about. I enjoy reading blogs others post to get a differHouse libraryent perspective for something I’ve been thinking about. Sometimes I just flip through magazines to see what crazy idea pops into my head.

Sometimes social media can be a good source of inspiration. What others are saying and sharing can stir my pot of creativity as well.

As you read to be inspired, make sure you stop and take notes. Don’t let your inspiration fizzle into thin air, but capture your thoughts in your journal or save them in an ideas document for later.


Stirring the Pot of Creative Ideas

People Watching—Stirring the Pot of Creative Ideas

Shanna D. Gregor

I don’t travel by plane a lot, but when I do, I take the opportunity to watch people. Unknown to them, people on the way here and there, become a great inspiration for my writing. Their facial expression, actions, conversations and lack of conversations stir my pot of creativity.people in airport

A delayed flight or an exceptionally long layover used to upset me, but now I kick into observation mode and look for a good place to plant myself out of the way with a good view of people coming and going. I imagine what I can do with all the unique and interesting exchanges that go on right before my eyes.

I remember a mom traveling with three little ones. (Parents with little ones are usually quick to catch my attention.) The tiny infant had 99% of mom’s attention as she tried to feed the hungry little one. A dark-headed, dark-eyed little boy, who looked to be about five, followed his excited two- or so-year-old sister with the same dark hair and eyes to the water fountain. My first thought was, Eww! She’s going to drink out of that!

I watched as the sweet big brother struggled to help his little sister reach the fountain. It took a lot of work on his part, and I thought about going over and helping, but I didn’t want to interrupt their exchange. The little boy was so sweet and careful, encouraging her not to get her hair and dress wet. His face was red from all the huffing and puffing.

As they concluded their time at the water fountain and went back to Mom, I put some notes in my phone to remind me of the observation and the many ideas of what had popped into my head. My time watching mom and her three kids gave me lots of ideas for upcoming blogs and devotions for several of my clients.

People watching can inspire you in many directions. Take some time to people watch and see how your quiet time observing inspires you!


Quote Me—Reminders about Quotation Marks

Shanna D. Gregor

Quotes can serve a double-edged sword. When you’re words are shared, especially in print, they are forever recorded. If they are profound, enlightening or encouraging, they add to the life of others. When your negative words escape your lips and are recorded in print, they bring a wave of regret, disappointment, anger or any array of emotional responses.

Let’s refresh a little in how quotation marks are used in writing. We are most familiar with using them in written dialogue, but there are three other important uses of quotation marks. You should use quotation marks when dealing with citations, titles or in reference to words that have special meaning. So, let’s talk first about dialogue.

I find it very difficult to follow along when dialogue is not clear. Quotation marks make it very clear, as to what was said, but it’s important to help your reader. It’s important to start a new paragraph each time the speaker changes. This is the standard, but sometimes (not often) it is acceptable for two or more speanewspaper for quote me - reminders about quotation markskers’ words to appear in the same paragraph, if the lines from each speaker are short and the writing is enriched by breaking the paragraph with scene changes.

Citations (citing someone word for word), are set off in specific ways, usually according to the style you are following. Generally, you want to use quotation marks to identify shorter citations inside regular text. This helps differentiate between a paraphrase and exact words.

When it comes to titles of poems, journal or magazine articles, book chapters, songs and short stories—quotes are easily identified in text when they are set off by quotation marks.

Quotation marks distinguish words as satirical or ironical. Words needing “special attention” can require quotation marks. Be careful not to overdo this in your writing, otherwise it defeats the purpose and the reader discounts the “special” words because so many words are set apart.

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